3 Surprising Things I Hate About Christmas

OK, "hate" is a strong word, I know. I'm not a scrooge... I do love Christmas. But as I've grown and been stretched in my faith, things get easier to see past that sometimes mask the true focus of Christmas. And it leaves me unsettled.

Here are 3 things I hate about Christmas and how Jesus calls me to respond.

December just started and if you're like me, you already have your Christmas to-do list in full swing. I can already feel my body running down just thinking about it. Target runs, thousands of lights waiting to be put up, endless baking to do, buying more decorations because you realized you don't have enough as your friend who just posted on Facebook. Some things start off innocent and good, but then become our focus and we get weary in trying do it all.

Jesus calls... "Remember that your ultimate goal is living close to Me, being responsive to My initiatives. I can communicate with you most readily when your mind is uncluttered and turned toward Me. Seek My face continually through out this day. Let my presence bring order to your thoughts, infusing Peace into your entire being".

You know what I get so bummed out about in our society? We can't even enjoy one holiday without the other one showing up months before it needs to. Here's a blurb from USAToday,

"Retailers are putting out a little bit of holiday stuff earlier each year," says Mike Gatti of the National Retail Federation's marketing division. "They know a substantial number of consumers will pick out Christmas tree ornaments even as they're picking out Halloween pumpkins." 

Everywhere you go, we're bombarded with buying and satisfying those little empty spots in our hearts we all have. Trying to fill and fill so we "think" we'll be happy. These temptations are all around us. 

Jesus calls... "Come to Me with your gaping emptiness, knowing that in Me you are complete. As you rest quietly in My presence, My light within you grows brighter and brighter. Facing the emptiness inside you is simply the prelude to being fulled with My fullness".

{Pressure to be Perfect}
How many commercials do we have to watch during this season to feel completely inadequate? Or a failure? Not many for me. I can't get my husband the brand new Lexus with the big red bow... fail! I won't be happily making crafts every day when my children are home on vacation.... fail! I won't have a cute little apron baking goodies while my husband walks in from work... fail!

Let's admit we just can't live up to the standards set around us. What kind of world do those people live in?? Not mine, that's for sure. Let's be smart to know those perfect people we see in the commercials aren't real. And just tell yourself now... you cannot possibly complete all those things you pinned on your "Christmas" Pinterest board.

Jesus calls... "The world exerts a downward pull on your thoughts. Stay in continual communication with Me whenever you walk through the wastelands of this world. I am the culmination of all your hopes and desires. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last; who is and was and is to come". 

I love Christmas because of Who came.
I love Christmas because it reminds me of Jesus' second return.
I love Christmas because it means time with my family.
I love Christmas because I love giving.
I love Christmas because it reminds me of the greatest gift I have... salvation.

All "Jesus Call" excerpts were taken from "Jesus Calling; Devotions for Every Day of the Year" by Sarah Young. 

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