Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Keeping Christmas simple
I did a google search for 'keep Christmas simple' and came up with a few preachy articles and I summarized this one which is useful and not just selling goods.
40 ways to keep Christmas simple and meaningful – adapted from an article by
Victor M. Parachin
In the Christmas race - there is shopping, baking, wrapping, mailing. Christmas is supposed to be a time of joy, peace and goodwill. But on the other hand, the planning and preparation can be intimidating and overwhelming. For too many people, Christmas becomes a burden and not a blessing. so....
1. Remind yourself of the reason for the season. It is the birth of Christ which must be the central focus and foundation for all activities in December.
2. Plan ahead. Rather than operate on automatic, doing the same thing year after year, be intentional. Spend five minutes daily in silence. Claim the spirit of the innkeeper. Be inspired by the one who opened his heart and stable.
3. Feed your mind. Check into the background of some Christmas symbols - candles, evergreens, poinsettia, mistletoe, the advent wreath.
4. Rethink your habits. Is it really necessary for you to mail out 350 holiday cards?
5. Organize yourself. Make a list of all the things you need to do
6. Cultivate courtesy. Be especially kind and courteous to sales personnel..
7. Extend compassion to a stranger.
8. Memorize some Scripture.
9. Just say ‘no’. Decide it’s okay to say ‘no’. You don’t have to accept every invitation.
11. Don’t become a slave. Ask for some help. Don’t do it all alone. By allowing others to pitch in and help, you make the family celebration fun and relaxing for everyone.
12. Try new ways of sending Christmas greetings. E-mail to your family and friends who are hooked up to the internet.
13. Send a card to someone incarcerated. “Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners,” is the reminder of Scripture.
14. Drink more water.
15. Light a prayer candle every day.
16. Skip a meal.
17. Be considerate toward young children. Consider donating baby food, diapers, clothing to a local organization which serves children and families in need.
18. Go vegetarian for one meal.
19. Give thanks. Everything you have is a gift from God - your life, your family, your job, your faith.
20. Practice patience.
21. Make amends. Reach out to someone who’s wronged you or someone you have offended. Forgive and let yourself be forgiven. The chances are good that both of you will feel much, much better.
22. Broaden your concept of ‘family’. Be extremely inclusive at Christmas.
24. Cultivate joy.
25. Be cheerful.
26. Help fight world hunger. During the holiday season when most of us tend to overeat, consider giving away ten percent of your holiday party budget to an agency which fights world hunger.
27. Pray for each person who sends you a card. Christmas cards often contain news about the senders. That information is good material for the basis of prayer.
Remember that Christmas is not only a date but a state of mind. Add meaning to your holiday celebration by keeping the spirit of Christmas alive all year long.