I looked at our family calendar for December, and it looked B-U-S-Y, especially this week. Although I am okay with our lives being busy, I do like it when we can all just be home. We live very close to the schools in town, so we often walk there for events and practices. We live less than a mile from the church buildings, where we do work and worship. Our congregation has been busy with various events all month, including a winter clothing drive and a special concert by ministry guests. In our own home, we have decorated both inside and outside. Most of the decorating happened the day after Thanksgiving, and I even bought a few more items to add to our festivities.
Our youngest child whined to us the other day that he is the only one from the second grade who does NOT have an elf. You know, an elf that comes and causes mischief in the home, and tattles to Santa if the kids of the house are being bad. I don't know the story behind it all, but it has become a tradition for many families in recent years. I want my own kids to enjoy childhood, but not at the cost of my own sanity. Getting them to the places they need to be is enough chaos for me. I told my son that it is not true that EVERYONE ELSE has an elf. Their classroom elf should be fun enough for him. My husband told him that people have different things in their houses, and no two families are exactly alike. After pouting for a few more minutes, the talk of any elves ceased and life moved on.
Although we don't have any mythical creatures playing with toothpaste and marshmallows, we do like to play a game called "Star from Afar". Every day we are to read a bible verse that pertains to the coming of Christ's birth. We also are supposed to hide the star somewhere around the house. When the kids find it, they move their wise men figurines to it. On Christmas, the star will be returned to the Nativity set we have displayed. Our kids know that it is us that are moving the star, and they now like to take turns looking up the verse of the day. Today's verse is Matthew 2:10 (English Standard Version)
When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.
There will be several secular Christmas activities that will become "a thing", like where to see the best light shows and re-watching new favorite holiday movies. I really do like Christmas things. But what will not change about Christmas in our home, because we won't let it, is that Jesus will always be the center of our celebrations. My kids will get older, and their schedules and interests will change. They won't be in all of the Christmas musicals for us to fuss over (but maybe they will run the sound booth), We will "do Christmas" a bit differently every year. What I want us to never forget, though, is the joy that we have because our Saviour did come all of those years ago. We can be joyful in all of our circumstances. Those wise men knew that the Messiah had come, and they spent years to get to Him. Now that we know Jesus, we can celebrate and love Him all year long, not just during Christmas time.