Sunday, November 20, 2011

~Sink Your Teeth in This~

Christmas is Not Your Birthday - Michael Slaughter

So very very excited. Every year I make a pledge to cut back, simplify, slow down, and find the JOY in Christmas. And every year I manage to get suckered in, take the short cut and just plain make poor choices when it comes to the Christmas Season. I LOVE giving gifts.. I would much rather give than get.. and can't wait to see how the person likes the gift I selectively chose for them. And the hoot faces on Christmas morning is priceless. It's such a wonderful experience. And the day goes on.. we have 4 Christmases on Christmas Day. By the time the day has ended the kids are on overload and worn out. They have that sad "deer in the headlight look" that looks so sad. And that usually ends with a hellacious barn burner breakdown of sheer exhaustion and overload. And after a certain point in the day.. the little hoots are in such a state of overload.. they get greedy and want to open more and more.. as if 20 gifts just hasn't been enough.. (and the number 20 is on the small side)!!
So the day ends in sheer extreme tiredness. And then a feeling of let down and sadness occurs. All the emotion and motion has set into play vast array of expectations, feelings and movement. And in the end.. often times a feeling of let down. Let down? Let down from what? And I have to review the entire holiday season of constant activity, parties, people, events and expectations. And when it ends the silence is painful to me. But this is supposed to be the most wonderful timeof the year.. And it is in many instances. I LOVE shopping and spending precious too little time with family. But still.. it always feels a little less than.
This is THE YEAR! This is the year that I participate in a book review of an awesome book. And the title alone blows me away. Why of course! Why didn't we think of that? Who are we to claim this day as our own? If we look around.. it's so easy to see how we confiscated this day. Why we often don't even say Christmas anymore. Christ has been reduced to XMas. And we no longer say "Merry Christmas" it's not politically correct.. now it's "Happy Holidays".

Jesus has been missing from Christmas for a long time. I don't mean to say that I don't think of Him, I most certainly do. Never a Christmas comes that I am not reminded of Easter and His sacrifice for me that is coming. But I and we as a culture have taken away they complete JOY in the gifts that He brings. If I see through His eyes, then I will see what He sees. And it isn't the bright lights, beautifully wrapped packages and traditional huge meals. What He sees is so completely against what we would LIKE to see and celebrate.

And So will I!! I am so incredily excited. Our school district takes on a challenge for most schools to have a food and $$ drive so less fortunate families will have a Thanksgiving meal. One incredible little boy in our school challneged himself to raise $4000.00 in less than one month!! It seemed impossible. But God said "Now Yall help him out and watch this!". He will turn in almost $3000 tomorrow morning. I get chills and tears when I think of this. And his schoolmates delivered over $2200 and over 1300 lbs of food. The money alone from drive will feed over 260 families!! And this is just from our school alone!!!
I can't wait to bring my two hoots to the little food pantry where I volunteer. They will get to see a snapshot of their good works in action and what it means. I am so incredibly thankful my hoots it".. they see that it has nothing to with them, me or even the folks getting fed.. But it's about HIM!! And we are just the tools to show the world what He sees and What HE/We can do.

Another activity we hoots like to participate in is the Operation Christmas Child Shoebox project. We each get to fill one shoebox and man can we stuff them. They have so much fun thinking about, shopping and filling their box. It's a challenge sometime to see if the lid will stay on.

We do these things every year. And they are fun and great lessons for us. However, we still get suckered into the commercial and crazy memememe
of the abused holiday. This year, I vow to stay focused and on track to teach myself and our family the Real Reson for the Season. And the first chapter of this book is wonderful.. It's a small book, 4x6 with short quick chapters. But man to they pack a punch.

The HUGE Dugar family with their 20 kids and counting has gotten me to think. My opinions have been out on this unusual family which has a show on Cable TV. HOw can they be so sane, healthy and happy with that many kids. But the truth is.. I can't find anything really wrong with them. They communicate, are debt free, and peace seems to reside in their home. How many American families can say the same. They have a family rule that I have incorpored into our home for hopes of peace and tranquility amongst the Hoots.

It's very simple: JOY
1. Put Jesus first
2. Think of Others second
3. And then Yourself

What a simple concept~

1 comment:

Bonny said...

Something we all should think about.

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