Oh, the holidays
Many times, I like to pretend that all the families that gather together for Thanksgiving and Christmas are perfect. I convince myself that everyone sitting around the table is smiling real smiles, giving gifts out of pure generosity, and attending the dinner because they want to…like reeeeeally want to.
The reality, however, (for me at least) is that some of those smiles are forced. Some of the gifts are bought out of obligation or a need for approval and attention. And let’s face it, some of the people there are simply tolerating the entire thing.
Why, sister, are we so pressured to mask our loved ones from the truth of our imperfect lives? Is it embarrassment? Is it to keep up an image? Is it to prove to everyone else that you’ve got it all under control?
I just want to encourage you to be intentional about filling your homes with FREEDOM this holiday season. Christ died to free us from the bondage of sin. We are free to love, free to forgive, and free to live. If the hopeless have no example of what that looks like, then they’ll never really experience the Hope of Christ. We are to be the bearers of hope to the broken hearts that exist, especially the ones in our families.
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. – 2 Corinthians 3:17
So, this Thanksgiving, when you’re around the table, be the first to squeeze that family member who may be far from God. Create a space for them to know they are loved and accepted and not judged. When Christmas comes, be the first to free the family of having the pressure to buy gifts for Secret Santa or having to purchase new clothes for family photos if you know it will be more of a burden on them than a joy.
Take some time to really think about ways you can take some pressure off that you or someone else might’ve placed on everyone. Remember, this should be a time that is filled with as little care and worry as possible because it’s not about us. The freedom and life offered to us through Jesus should overpower every one of our homes for Thanksgiving, Christmas and truly at any time of the year.
We’re praying for you this season. Remember, walk in the freedom that Christ died for us to live in.
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