You know where I’m going with this, right?
Please don’t misunderstand me. Each Christmas season I start out excited. I love Christmas music and lights and smells. It surely is a time of year to bring pleasure to the senses. I love setting up nativity scenes and wrapping gifts. It’s just that by the time January rolls around exhaustion has taken hold, and illness has set in. So what steps am I planning to take this year to avoid holiday burnout?
1. Focus on the purpose of the celebration. Jesus Christ. If I measure each and every activity according to how it will affect my relationship to and my testimony for Him, that will put me on the right track to begin with.
2. Realize I cannot possibly please everyone. Ultimately my desire is to please Christ. This is a time of year for parties, programs and a multitude of other activities. There could be plenty of good in each event, but it is easy to over-commit. This leads to a tired mama who snaps at Daddy and the children. This of course does not honor Christ or create pleasant memories for the family. So my goal is to be very selective about the activities we commit to.
3. Plan and work ahead. I’m already doing this. The children and I have been working on Christmas cards and letters. There are gifts being bought and made. Within the next week or so, baking is slated to begin. I do not want to be stressing because I’ve waited until the last minute. However, even these types of activities must be selected carefully and for the right reason. Again, I want to glorify Christ and create happy memories. If I am doing these things simply because I feel obligated, that too leads to bitterness and stress. So I am trying to spread these things out and choose the ones that are most meaningful.
4. Eat properly and drink enough water. Let’s face it. The holiday season is busy. It is so easy to give in to less-than-healthy convenience foods. That’s not even to mention all the cookies, candies and irresistible coffee creamers! Over-indulgence of these goodies coupled with lack of proper rest is a sure recipe for disaster. So while I have already succumbed to the charms of peppermint mocha and pumpkin spice cappuccino, I intend to be more deliberate about my food choices and water consumption.
This is just a start. There are other things I plan to do to make this year’s holiday memories more pleasant. My heart yearns for the Christmases of yesteryear. We might never go back to that, but we can make ours more meaningful.
May God bless you and yours this Christmas season!
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