This year we're really thrilled to take his concept of the season to the next level. To introduce the relational side of the season, about tradition, family and faith. About how Grandpa would really prefer something handmade over another festive tie; and about a baby named Jesus, who would eventually revolutionize the world.
While I help my son unpack the truths behind this season of celebration I have to pause myself and reconsinder my own concept of the season. I've always been the "less is more" type, so we've always gone the simple route with the secular side of our celebration.
But what if I'm done with less, and am ready for more out of Christmas? Not more stuff. Heavens no. More tradition, more faith, more love. These are the things I want to give and receive.
The mall is trying to sell me my "best holiday season ever", but I'm not sure I want what they have to offer. My house is tiny, especially for a family of six, so to say we have a limited amount of storage space is an understatement. If I don't want my house to look like an episode of Hoarders, I have to watch the amount of stuff I buy. Investing in a bunch of earthly possessions just doesn't make a lot of sense for us this season (or ever, really).
But you know what is so darned cool? The heart has unlimited storage. The more love you add, the better it gets. Overflowing closet = eek. Overflowing heart = an outpouring of love. Do you see where this is going? Do you see why I'd rather invest in my children's hearts instead of another electronic device?
So this holiday season, in my attempts to make it "the best Christmas ever" I have a question that I'm using as a filter. Does this particular gift or tradition improve a relationship, show love, or invest in someone's heart? If not, is it a necessary part of my season? If the answer is no, what needs to change so that it does, or should it just be omitted altogether?
Christmas cards sound like such a great way to connect and be all relational, but in reality they aren't. Not for me anyway. Photos of my children sent out were not really an attempt to build relationship, but more like me trying to show off what a good photographer I am. Christmas letters that try to help people catch up were just an attempt to make my life sound prettier and more put together than it really is. Lies and bragging complete with a cute postage stamp. Not a necessary part of my celebration, so they can go. Buh-bye.
They can be replaced with a Christmas craft marathon with my kids. The joy of creative time together is a gift for me, the product of a well thought out, custom made creation for a grandparent is then our gift to give.
This is how we will celebrate this year. More love. More family. More Jesus.