Thursday, December 21

Final Christmas Prep - what you really NEED

I wrote this post three years ago and never got around to publishing it. But it rings just as true today.

Guys. It's four days until Christmas. It's the epitome of crunch time when we all run ourselves ragged getting everything just perfect for the big day. Right? In and out of stores, more presents, more food, more decorating!

But this year we're after a different Christmas. This year we're after peace. And I just want you to know, it's okay to chill. To let go of grand plans and take hold of the simple alternatives. To wait with eager expectation and just let things be.

Check out my SIMPLE Christmas projects and tutorials here.

Don't get me wrong, there are a lot of things I'd still like to get done. But it turns out there are very few things I actually need to get done. That's the key, friends.

Things I still need to do are the simple and basic things. The things that, if I don't finish them, will actually cause problems or hinder our Christmas celebration. And I can only think of four things:
  • finish wrapping gifts (although even this one is iffy. I could leave things in their amazon boxes and we would survive)
  • pack for our holiday travels
  • prep our (simple) Christmas meals 
  • read the Christmas story

Now, I can think of a whole list of things I would still like to get done. But they are all extra. I can recognize that if I don't do them... it's not actually going to hinder us in anyway. We can still have a beautiful, meaningful, peaceful Christmas. Probably even more-so, because when we're not distracted by our own need to impress with the "perfect" Christmas, we have more time to focus on the things that are actually important and meaningful this season. So here are the things I've eliminated from my list already:
  • making Christmas cookies
  • putting up exterior lights
  • fancy gift wrapping
  • cooking an elaborate feast
  • sending Christmas cards

All that to say: don't be afraid to chill, friends. Don't be afraid to take an honest look at what NEEDS to be done - what truly matters for your family - and then let go of whatever doesn't fit the bill.  Don't let striving for a "perfect" Christmas steal the joy and peace from your home this season.

Let's have a peaceful Christmas, friends.

And above all, remember this: no matter how much we chase it this season, true peace and joy only come with the Savior we are celebrating. Who came because of his great love for us and died so our sins could be forgiven. He took the punishment that should be ours. This Christmas, don't forget what's truly most important, and don't let your kids forget it either. 

"For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:11
But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. Titus 3:4-5
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. 1 Timothy 1:15-16
And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;
    "For hate is strong,
    And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
    The Wrong shall fail,
    The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men."

Have a merry Christmas, and I'll see you in 2024!

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