I love Christmas time, I love spending time with the family, opening presents and eating lots of yummy treats! This year is a bit different having moved into a new place and getting everything settled in. Our little Christmas tree is an accurate representation of our holiday season, simple and small. Just yesterday I began to feel down because we don’t have a lot of Christmas decorations and my expectations of what a first Christmas would be like weren’t met. I dreamed of going to buy our first Christmas tree and realizing how hard it is to take care of a real tree so we never do it again. I dreamed of stuffing cute stockings with fun gifts and candy. I dreamed of baking lots of holiday goodies and giving them to friends and family.
But you know, I am learning that Christmas doesn’t have to be all about parties, presents, and parades. It’s about creating and continuing new traditions with the ones you love. Matt and I are exploring some new traditions we want to begin with our family. I hope to do them years down the road when we have children of our own. And I have been thinking, what makes traditions stick? Is it the funny memories it brings to mind, or the feeling of warmth and comfort? Maybe it’s the amazement you get when you see a house covered in lights that light up to your favorite holiday song. Maybe it’s the feeling of consistency and predictability that we enjoy. I mean all year long, we plan, work, travel, eat, sleep, exercise but by no surprise, we are hit with unexpected events and how do we normally respond? Sometimes with fear, panic, worry but ultimately our goal is to have faith in the Lord and trust that he is still faithful no matter the circumstances that come.
Of course, Christmas points us to the story of Jesus’ birth and the miracle of what God orchestrated. But perhaps it points us to a character trait of Jesus himself. He is constant. Just like we can expect to do the same Christmas traditions each year with our family, we can expect Jesus to be faithful. He is the constant friend in time of need. 2017 may have been painful for you because the unexpected event of the year could’ve been the loss of a loved one. I am sorry that you are going through that and I want you to know that God is the ultimate comforter. And He loves you so much, He wants to provide you with such a grace for this season. He brings much more comfort than sugar cookies, eggnog, and classic movies ever could. I’m not saying don’t do those things but remember that those things are temporary and His love is eternal! And just like the holiday traditions, what draws you to Him? What makes your relationship with Him stick? Is it the funny conversations you have with him? Or the feeling of overwhelming peace and joy? Maybe it’s the amazement you get when you see a scripture leaping off the page as if it wasn’t written just for you.
Do you spend time in the word on a daily basis, do you acknowledge his presence throughout your day? Maybe you can start some new traditions with the Lord. Ask him what kind of traditions he wants to start with you today? Just like Matt and I will enjoy Christmas with some little ones down the road, Abba Father wants to enjoy time with you doing the traditions you both establish together. Santa’s bag has got nothin’ on the presence of God, so dive in and explore everything He has for you.
I recently posted a video sharing the exciting news of my blog launching and to celebrate I want to give you some free prints you can frame and hang in your home. They’re simple and sweet just like our first Christmas. I hope that you have a wonderful December and that the Lord really speaks to you in a powerful way this season.