Presents stacking up under the tree, snow falling from the sky, kids making lists and watching for Santa to bring them toys, ah the joys of Christmas time. Perhaps families are frustrated at the travels they must endure to see this family member and that family member, kitchens become a mess form all the cooking, credit card bills are racking up from the present we must buy each person we will see. Lets face it, society tells us if we don't buy a gift for someone then we are losers and don't care about that person. This is an area I struggle with. Children begin to sense the stress in parents rising, and come January when the bills come rolling in kids will really feel it. Mom and dad might begin to fight over money, or worry might be etched in the face of a parent. The joy of Christmas is gone, the new toys are stashed away, the new shirts hung in the closet and life returns to normal. Until next year, the day after Thanksgiving when all the Christmas excitement returns.
So what can we do about it? Well first off we need to remember why we celebrate Christmas, we are rejoicing for the birth of our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ. Spirits of greed and selfishness are not from the Lord but are very real and from the evil one who seeks to kill, steal and destroy even our Christmas joy! Satan loves to get our children by attacking with spirits of greed. Its the easiest fastest way to get into our hearts as humans, selfishness, a nasty nasty thing.
When we get in the car and its off to Grandmothers house and we are yelling at our kids because our frustration level has had it, we are allowing evil into our hearts and our homes, and our cars. We are teaching our children that Christmas joy sucks too! We must must must ensure we are not allowing those spirits into our homes. Gift giving is NOT what Christmas is about, sure we do it to bring joy to others faces, but as for my family we will not go broke to do it. Often times we simply give gifts to be like everyone else so we aren't the only one not doing it. I do not like to look like the cheap person, I struggle with my flesh like everyone else. I have learned that I must die to my flesh and become like Christ, He calls us to be the servant of all. We must all remember to stand firm and put on the full armor of God to resist the evil one, when you start to get frustrated stop and ask yourself, is this what Christmas is? A day to allow evil into my home? A day to be ugly to my children or my spouse? A day to argue with family or dread seeing them? The Word tells us that at the Name of Jesus demons will flee. This year will you make them flee?
So this year in my little family, we will instead give the gift of servant hood to others, after all that is what we are called to do, to be like Jesus. And what better way to honor Him then that for His birthday? We do this and teach our children about it by doing a sparkle box year round. After all being like Jesus is not just on Christmas. We have a little square sparkly box that sits in our living room and through out the year as we do random acts of kindness for others we write it down and put the slip of paper into the box, in secret, we do not do it for honor but for our Lord. Cheyenne loves to put things in there, Jax is a little young yet!
On Christmas day we will open our little box as a present for the Lord and pray over each one, thanking the Lord for the opportunity to serve His people, we will celebrate HIS birthday on this day. Our children will have gifts from us and we will have fun too, but our main focus will be on Christ.
Another way our children have chosen to honor the Lord this year is to give gifts to needy children around the world through Samaritans Purse. They have a Christmas catalog where children or adults can pick out gifts and send in that amount of money and it will go to the gifts chosen. This year Jaxon has given the gift of milk to little guys his age, and Cheyenne felt led to give to provide hot meals for a week at a time for other children. It is great fun to select gifts and see pictures of them in the catalog!
He loves this Catalog!
This year how will you celebrate Christmas?