Archive of ‘Holiday stress’ category

Happy and Merry? Really? YES!

Merry Christmas! I’m feeling like I have to apologize for feeling merry and happy during this season. In the last few weeks, I’ve been privy to several conversations about the holidays, conversations about how hard this time of year can be. I get that. A few moms discussed their opinion that telling your children about Santa Claus was lying to your children and would cause them to distrust you in the future when they found out that you lied. I get that. I’ve heard that some aren’t celebrating Christmas because it has nothing to do with Jesus. Materialism, Commercialization, Stress. I get that. The conversations were between people I love very much, people I respect very much. I do understand, but when I listen, there isn’t any room for me to feel differently without being wrong or bad. My love for the season makes me a materialistic liar who participates in my Savior being exploited for commercial gain. If I am enjoying the stress of the season, I must not be connected to my emotions. No, no one has said that to me personally, they just haven’t left much allowance for someone to think differently. I just want to give a shout out to the other Christmas lovers out there. Jesus’ birth is the most loving thing God has done for me. Without His birth, Jesus couldn’t have died for me. He couldn’t have risen. Probably the most well known Bible verse is John 3:16. I’m not even going to write it out, because you know it. God gave me the gift of Jesus because of love. God made me. He created me specifically. If you know me you’ve probably heard my opinion about embracing the creation that you are. If there are almost 7 billion people in the world and each of them has unique DNA and 10 unique fingerprints and 10 unique toe prints, God seems to be infinitely creative in how He has created us. If He created us that uniquely physically, I believe we are unique socially, academically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually… In my humble opinion it isn’t navel gazing to take a look at how you are created; it is honoring to God. God created me with a love language. Mine is gifts. I’m not apologizing for it. I love buying gifts, giving gifts and receiving gifts. I show love in this way. They will know we are Christians by our love. Naïve, maybe, but I think giving gifts at Christmas is loving people. It’s showing them that I know them; I’ve thought about something that just might bring them joy for a bit. I’ve thought about what they need. Christmas is coming for 12 months, so I try to save up each month for the season, and part of the fun is trying to live within my budget. It allows for creativity and strategic planning! I know the 10 commandments tell me not to lie. These commandments were written before the Israelites claimed the Promised Land. They also say not to kill, yet God told the Israelites to kill and even held them responsible when they didn’t complete what He had asked them to do. Soldiers that protect our land may have to make this horrific choice. No, I don’t think killing is something that I could ever do. I don’t even think I personally could be on a death penalty jury. I’m just saying that telling my children there was a Santa was not a lie I ever felt I had to confess. Our children are now 19, 22, 24 and 25. They trust me. When they got to the point where logic got the better of imagination, and they asked if Santa was real, we told them that he was not. He was make-believe. When they asked if we were the ones who bought the gifts, they were filled with gratitude. They thank us for giving them an experience that was a wonderfully fun one for our family. I do respect the choice not to celebrate. I do respect the choice to not “do Santa.” I just know I’m not the only Christmas lover, so for any of you who like me, do think this is a most wonderful season, I respect you too! Enjoy and Happy Holidays. (and by the way, my friend told me that a Christian radio station said that the word “holiday” came from the expression, “holy day” so I’m not taking Christ out of Christmas using that term!:)