Christmas stress is a matter of focus and trust.
As I write this Christmas 2015 is 2 weeks from tomorrow. I’ve already been asked that question I’ve heard every year since I became an adult: “Are you ready for Christmas?” My pat answer is: “I’m always ready for Christmas.” And it’s true. That’s because every single day is like Christmas to me. Every single day is a gift. That’s why they call it “the present”. (sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun) Seriously, I believe Christmas stress…that undue feeling of dread that you’ll forget to buy somebody a gift, or send out the cards, or the meal won’t come together…is a matter of where you place your focus and trust. My focus isn’t on gifts, cards, or meals. It’s on relationships…
…my earthly relationships with my wife, my extended family, and my friends. And most of all my relationship with the One who came to earth, born as a child in a manger, to bring the hope of salvation and eternal life to everybody who wants it. That person is Jesus, the Christ. The One Christmas is named for. Focus on Him instead of spending money, and I’m confident your stress will melt away. Trust in His love, and I’m certain you’ll have a whole, new, enlightened and heightened awareness of the meaning of Christmas.
This Christmas season (yes, Christmas…not holiday season), if you simply must stress, make it a good stress. Stress the importance of your family…the love you have for your wife, or husband, or mother, father, sister, brother, or friends. Make their happiness your top priority. And keep in mind that their happiness can’t be purchased with a brand new outfit, or toy, or car. Happiness occurs when emotional and spiritual needs are being met. And that can only happen through an act of your will to put others’ needs above your own.
The greatest example of putting others’ needs above self is Jesus. He came to earth to live as a man. And He gave His life, a free gift, so that you and I could live forever with Him in paradise. So, if Christmas stress is building up in you, focus on Him. Remember to give yourself. No greater gift, or love, could you possibly have than to lay down your life for a friend. I hope that helps. Does it?