Peace on earth
And so it begins, the most festive time of the year, sleigh bells, sparkles, lights and all. I have a love/hate relationship with the season. I know this sounds terrible, but I do. I love the season of giving, of celebration and Jesus. I also love the imagination and wonder in my children’s eyes. What I struggle with are the stresses, the anxiety and the pressure I feel in month of December. I love to go to my friend’s homes and smell the cinnamon and evergreen, but it tends to remind me that my house smells like dirty little boy feet and last night’s dinner. The posted pictures of Pinterest perfect décor, ahh …the pressure. I love watching a tutorial for making a pool noodle wreath, but find that the time and energy to make one escapes me. I stare in wonder at the edible snow globe cupcakes, and then the realization hits me that it would literally take 1 solid hour to make just one. I just can’t…And that is not something I admit often.
Another struggle of the season is, instilling gratitude in my children. I work year round to make sure that they value everything and not take “things’ for granted. However, during the season of giving, they are overwhelmed with the need to “get”. TV commercials flood them with the idea that they “must’ have this or they cannot “live’ without that. I want them to be grateful for a new skateboard, meanwhile their friend from school received a trip to the moon piloted by the avengers. I love doing the elf on the shelf, and believe me when I say I use the heck out of the phrase,"Santa is watching" during this month. But sometimes, it feels like just too much.
I want them to understand and appreciate that Jesus’ birth is ENOUGH. It was a gift. I also try to let them imagine, dream and enjoy every second of childhood. Two things bring me peace during the season of hustle and bustle, the nativity scene and any rendition of “Oh Holy night” I stop and stare at the nativity, I think of all the stress and anxiety Mary must have felt, a new expectant mother, fleeing her home, and carrying the savior. Talk about pressure. Yet, she found solace in a stall, with animals and hay, and strangers bringing her baby gifts. Although her birthing location was less than Pinterest worthy, it was “perfect’. The first Christmas was perfect without bells, without beautiful wrapping and decorations. It happened still. The words of the carol, “Fall on your knees”, Christ is born and it IS enough. I am grateful for his birth, his love and his faithfulness. The Peace of the season is sometimes difficult to find, but it’s worth searching for, it’s worth the struggle. I hope during this season of hurry you don’t let the peace escape you. Let there be Peace on earth and let it begin with me.