I am not big on New Year’s resolutions. I figure, if I want to better myself, why wait until January 1st? Why not not better myself on March 1st, August 24th, or today for that matter?
“But, it’s only Thanksgiving,” you may say. I know that it isn’t officially time for resolutions, but bare with me.
When pride isn’t blocking my view, the Holy Spirit convicts me of the many offensive ways in me.
As I pray the scripture, “See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting,” (Psalm 139:24) He promptly obliges. There is no shortage of material in that regard.
However, I choose to change on the Holy Spirit’s terms, not the world’s. Therefore, my resolution needs to start now, right before Thanksgiving. So, here it goes . . . .
I resolve not to be bitter this Christmas season. I resolve not to have a spirit of anger or judgment. I will not be snarky or walk around with a self righteous attitude. I resolve to shine with the kindness, love, and grace of Jesus Christ this Christmas season.
This is a tough one for me.
Each year I grow more annoyed with Christmas. Sometime in October, the soft, subtle sounds of jingle bells can be heard somewhere in the distance. And, once those jingle bells start ringing, we all go a little nuts.
I don’t have the shopping gene. There isn’t anything I would rather do less than go to a shopping mall. Especially in November and December.
I have nightmares of shiny and sparkly things. The scents of holly berries, apple crisp, Pumpkin spice, Christmas Cookies, and Balsam & Cedar candles mix into a nauseating odor. How do they know what Christmas Eve smells like anyway? Or Home Sweet Home? Or Sparkling Snow?
I dread being asked the question, “Do you have your Christmas shopping done?” With it comes pressure, so much pressure!
We are victims of Christmas. We are doomed to suffer; doomed to shop incessantly; doomed to bake candies and cookies unceasingly; and doomed to endlessly decorate our homes. We are gerbils spinning in our wheel, getting nowhere. Using up our usefulness on useless things.
It just seems like this is the season to celebrate anything and everything except Jesus Christ.
Okay, now it is out of my system. Whew! Sometimes changing starts with purging.
From now henceforth I resolve to see the best in people, not the worst. I resolve to show the kindness and love of Christ no matter what goes on around me. And, I resolve to carry thankfulness in my pocket long after the leftover turkey is gone.
God has been so good to me. But more than that, it’s because God has given me life when I deserved death. How could I ever stop being thankful for that?
According to Priscilla Shirer’s Bible study, The Armor of God, “Trust fuels thanksgiving and thanksgiving activates peace.”
Trust is a choice. Having an attitude of thankfulness is a choice. And peace is our reward.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Colossians 3:15
Do I trust God regardless of my circumstances or feelings? Will I choose to be thankful among the chaos of the Christmas season and the seeming pagan worship?
Though the fig tree may not blossom,
Nor fruit be on the vines;
Though the labor of the olive may fail,
And the fields yield no food;
Though the flock may be cut off from the fold,
And there be no herd in the stalls—
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation. Habakkuk 3:17-18 (NKJV)
Jesus Christ is Lord and He has overcome the world. Even though everyone gets a little wacky at Christmastime, nothing has changed. God will be worshiped, and He will be victorious.
A tiny baby was born in Bethlehem who came to save the world. And, He did!
Our mission as followers of Christ does not change because we feel we have the right to be bitter and angry. Some of the callous ways that people treat Christmas feel like a slap in the face. However, we are told to turn the other cheek.
Let’s not be offended at something that is not an offense to us. The offense is to Jesus and He isn’t worried about it. In the face of insult, He responds with love, kindness, and grace. If He can do that, then so can I.
We must trust God with everything we have. We must be thankful always, everyday and in every way. And if we do these things, we will have peace this Christmas season.
The road to peace is paved with thankfulness.
Thank you so much for reading my blog post!