Is It The Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

Tuesday is winding down. Grace is having one of those days. Nothing is right. Everything is a battle. Lots of mouthing off. Tons of ungratefulness. It’s just after 7, so we’re shipping her to sleepy-land. She needs it. Micki hasn’t been sleeping well with lots going on, she needs a night to relax and go to be early. So, we’re putting off tasks to put the whiney kid to bed and soak for a spell and hit the hay.

I’m thinking out loud as we plan for the holiday season, and it doesn’t look pretty. It seems everyone and every organization tries to make Christmas special, but these days in my world it seems like even though they mean well, they suck the fun out of it.

We’ve got money to send to Santa’s secret shop. Class Christmas party. Sunday School Christmas party. CLC Christmas party. School Christmas program. Church Christmas program. Office Christmas party. School Christmas party. Presents for teachers. Presents for leaders. Dishes to pass for this. Meals to make for that. And I haven’t even mentioned family yet!

Family. I’ve been talking to some friends about how their holidays are shaping up. Sharing with them some of my family stories. And you know what the thread I’m finding is? One word: Dysfunctional. Parents who don’t want to be with their kids, brothers who don’t haven’t spoken to sisters. In-laws and out-laws. And they are all getting together at Christmas. And they don’t want to be together. Wow!

I’m chuckling to myself because for the most part, I have never really experienced much of this until this year. A little bit of friction. Uncertainty. And I’m thinking my case is something out of the norm. What I’m finding is that I just entered the norm. Ironic, isn’t it? The traditional family is all but dead. Moms and Dads hanging stockings on the fireplace. Families decorating the tree together. Fresh baked food. Slowing down of life. And GRATEFULNESS. THANKFULNESS. All but gone.

But, I’m an optomist. Glass is half-full. And I have hope. I may not be able to change the world, but I can lead my family. I can provide for them a perspective that is not the norm. I can paint a picture of stockings, fireplaces, and slowing down. But the way I’m wired, I will have to work at it. Yeah, there is lots to do. And truthfully, Micki is taking care of most details. But Christmas doesn’t have to be the same old drag. It doesn’t have to be just surviving. It can be more. It could, if we try hard enough, actually become about a little Baby being born. I hope this Christmas season we all can have a Christmas like that.

Well, enough waxing eloquent. I don’t even think it was too eloquent. I’m going to do some Christmas shopping at Wal-Mart around midnight…Just kidding. I’m going to the tub.






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