Monday, November 30, 2015

CHRISTmas Traditions to help out the elf on the shelf...or the Grinch.

On Sunday our Pastor tried to make a joke as he was talking about the Adoration of Christ during the Advent Season. He said the month of the December our culture just expects people to talk about Jesus and that, as Christians we should saturate our traditions in the Gospel so that everything we do points to Christ, and then he said, "make the elf on the shelf point to Jesus." No one laughed. Honestly, I think it was more poingent than it was funny. He said, "Our culture has dropped Christ from Christmas because WE have dropped Christ from Christmas"

I LOVE Christmas and I LOVE the movie elf. I LOVE the movie elf ALMOST as much as I love Christmas.

My husband thinks I'm absolutely nuts because I draw in my bible. Granted, I have a Journaling Bible which allows me to work specifically in the margins but...sometimes I draw right over top of the scriptures. I use colored pencils so I can read the text underneath....but he thinks it's insane. He also thinks it's a little anal for me to try to find godly meaning in our Christmas traditions. I am generally given a tight budget to spend on Christmas Ornaments, so my dream of owning Ann Voskamp's "Greatest Gift" Paper Ornaments are pretty much out of financial reason and so is my fantasy of owning hand blown ornaments representing the symbols of the Jesse Tree attached with their perspective bible verses. The hubs thinks hand blown ornaments are "tacky." I tell him he's a Grinch.
 The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season!
Now, please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason.

Seriously, our Christmas personalities are like this:


While the hubs likes to put on a facade that he doesn't quite care, he spends hours cutting out my little Ann Voskamp printables with an exacto knife to finish off our Family Jesse (Christmas)Tree. He sits around the dinning table with me as we ice the sugar cookies and requests Gingerbread Houses to be made just like his mom did.

I really feel like he's secretly like this:

             So Cute!
My Hero!

How do we soften our hearts among the presents and the wrapping paper and the cookies and the parties? How do we spend the month pointed towards a helpless baby: The King of Kings. How do we teach our children that what our culture does should have no bearing on what we do in our homes, and how we share the story of the gospel with those God brings us in contact with.

Wouldn't it be great if on Christmas Day our kids were like: 

JESUS!!!!!!!!!! I KNOW HIM!!!!! I KNOW HIM!!!!!!!!

I want the kid to KNOW HIM! KNOW Him know Him. Like "I see you!" in the movie Avatar. 

God WANTS us to Know him like that. He WANTS us to have the same relationship as Adam and Eve had with Him in the garden before the fall.

If I KNEW Him, shouldn't I be SO excited for Christmas? Shouldn't I spend my weeks before Christmas anticipating the arrival of the Christ Child? Shouldn't I celebrate to remember? 

'Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a feast to the LORD; throughout your generations you are to celebrate it as a permanent ordinance. Exodus 12:14

They celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. Psalm145:7 NIV

'Then on the fifteenth day of the seventh month you shall have a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work, and you shall observe a feast to the LORD for seven days. Number 29:12

Go Tell it On the Mountain
Ummmm....exactly Buddy.

So Christmas comes, and it's okay to be excited about it! It's okay to be excited that the a Child is born to us THIS day, even though it's not THE day. It's our day of remembrance, our memorial, our feasting to the Lord, our eating and our drinking, and our giving. Give abundantly and Cheerfully.
and instead of being anti-materialistic anti-secular anti-X-mas help people feel like:

How do we help our Kids KNOW Him during this Christmas Season?

In the midst of baking cookies, and wrapping presents, and decorating, I want my heart to worship the one who all of this is for, I want to KNOW Him. I want to ENGAGE WITH Him. I want to GLORIFY Him, and I want to GROW to be more Like Him.

Check back in tomorrow for "4 Ways to Help them Know Of Him" and then "4 Ways to Help them Engage with Him" and then "4 Ways to Glorify Him" and finally "4 Ways to be Like Him"

I know this is weird.....but this song could definitely serve as a prayer.

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