HAPPY HOLIDAZE, 5 ways to avoid the daze!

When everything loudly lauds you with RUSH RUSH RUSH- hurry scurry you and I must fight back.  No, I’m not advocating a total street mob, not riots but rather intentionality.   
Today, the grocery store was a mob of people, my cell phone rang, the salvation army bell still ringing in my ears all demanding my focused attention.  Why hadn’t I more cash on hand?  The list written in pencil firmly gripped in my hand was not to be lost amid the bustle.  Rather than rushing past a friend to gather up supplies for my loved ones-  I had a chance conversation with her and as she shared a portion of her family’s history I was blessed.  Her imprint lingered as she had shared of the providence of God in protecting her mother during World War II.  What a gift to my day.

This year I have had a moment or two of cray cray, however God has given me an early heads up to prepare for this annual rush festival.   Nudged by sense and sensibility I have set 5 intentions early, and I promise to not be overrun by the “daze” in Holidaze.  These I hope to share with you, so that together we can enjoy our holiday!

1) Set your holiday intention:
I will to be kind, to all.  I will, to spend time moving toward Christ.  I will to pray for the broken and lonely this Christmas.  I will to take my change jar down to the Salvation Army donation.  I will to take the kids, and remind them giving is priority.  I wonder what is your “I will” intention?

2) Create a culture of kindness: 
Your cashier is worth your smile, (she may be working the holiday, and by serving you she bypasses the meal at her parent’s home for the 2nd year in a row).  Hint she (my cashier today) told me as much.  Our dinner’s will be fine even without that understocked must have item.
Thank God the chairs around the table are filled, and the loved ones who are missing are remembered with great warmth and love.  Perhaps, have the kids all call grandma or grandpa, and sing jingle bells and silent night. Do not forget the Christmas kindness bonus!! Yes, scratch a note and tuck a coffee card in your purse to hand out to the weary overworked teacher you run into.

3) Laugh and play:
Tell your children stories about the messes they have made over the year and tickle the naughties out of them.  Bring joy and laughter where ever possible.  Make them merry often!  We picked up a plank of wood from the lumber store and some wheels to make an indoor floor scooter.  Do a craft or head out to a nativity, or church gathering.  Over the top option: Christmas prank the playful: the fruitcake re-gifting, or with “yellow snow” coloring write Merry Christmas at your favorite ski mountain? The options are endless.  In general have some fun!

4) Stay flexible:
Plans can change, snow happens, kids get sick. Embrace the adventure.  Now, is the time to be reminded of Emmanuel- God with US to help us navigate the mid-game changes!

Matthew 6:25 ESV 
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

Psalm 9:10 ESV 
And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you. 
5) Stay faithful with devotions:
Borrow, beg, or buy an advent book to enrich your spirit and feel your wonder at the miracle of Christ at Christmas.  I recommend one by Pastor Brian Dolleman. In His words: “It’s a great resource for you and your family to lean in and prepare for what is to come.”  Finding God: An Advent Devotional

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