Friday, November 6, 2009

Scheming Christmas

Inspired by reading scripture, understanding Jesus' call to his followers to deny themselves, take up their crosses, and follow Him, that

Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we must care for orphans and widows in their troubles, and refuse to let the world corrupt us. James 1:27 NLT
and also through the influence of organizations like Advent Conspiracy, World Vision, Samaritan's Purse, etc., I'm working at making Christmas, at least for our family, more about giving gifts to Jesus, and making the gifts we give each other as thoughtful and full of love as possible, and less about spending money. We haven't cut back our Christmas budget this year, but my goal is to have a significant surplus after all the Christmas gifts are done, and to gift that extra to people around the world that have such serious needs that we could help meet. Advent Conspiracy's promo video is inspiring. Their theme is this: Worship Fully. Spend Less. Give More. Love All. This new approach to Christmas requires more planning and thought.
Which leads me to the other change I have made this Christmas. I've already started my Christmas. And I have a plan. I listened to Marcia Ramsland last year on Midday Connection talk about simplifying the holidays, and a notebook she sells to organize and plan the Christmas season starting November 1st. I didn't buy the notebook, but I'm following the plan this year, which means getting all the gifts done in the first 3 weeks of November. This leaves the end of the month for decorating and the month of December for the best parts of Christmas... parties and cookies and acts of love towards others, celebrating the advent with stories about Christ, Christmas carols, evenings together as a family in the cozy light of the Christmas tree. I have to say, shopping in early November really does beat the crowds; My Hero and I were in the city yesterday and found front row parking in three different places. And I don't need to worry about the department stores being stocked for Christmas; they start pulling out the lights and decorations in September before the leave change their color.
I can't wait to have the gift shopping/planning/making behind me. I'm envisioning a peaceful December with time to spare to focus on others, and even though I tend to be more optimistic about how things will turn out than experience would dictate, I can't see how getting an early start could do anything but help.

1 comment:

Sue said...

Noble goals!! How are you doing so far? I love how you've titled it "Scheming Christmas". :o)