Christmas just doesn’t have the same flare that it used to have for me, now that I am nearly an adult. When I was a child, I would literally count the days from October all the way to Christmas day in anxious anticipation. Now, it’s like I’m just crossing my fingers that it won’t snow in a storm so that I won’t have to drive in the thick of the stuff. When Christmas music starts up, I internally begin to scream because I know I will be sick of it before I even get to December. What happened? Did “reality” just sink in? Or am I just going through the motions of adult life?
I think the truth of Christmas just got jumbled into everyday life and cultural distortions of the holidays for me. I used to be able to distinguish my favorite seasonal enjoyments when I didn’t have many other cares in the world besides my childish dreams and delights. Now, it’s as if all the delights of Christmas lose their flavor with each turn of the calendar pages that mark my life.
The culture makes Santa Claus, Christmas trees, gifts, food, and Christmas music the overwhelming focuses of the holiday. Any of those things, in forced quantities, easily become distasteful in their costly extravagance, causing the celebration of the season to become an exhausting, tedious exercise that feels empty in the end.
Children don’t have to worry about the expenses or the exhaustion and they seem to adore the celebration in a bigger way than adults with their starlit eyes and excitement over gifts, lights, and new thrills. Can adults learn to love Christmas just as much as they used to by changing their perspective and attitude? We shouldn’t expect Christmas delights to come as they did when we were children, but can’t we try and learn to love the season by overcoming what our culture tells us about it?
While writing this post, I’ve asked myself another question: “What can I always love about Christmas no matter what?” I’ve decided to stick to the elements that I love throughout the season and to let them ground me to the truths that I know about Christmas. Reminding myself what’s beautiful and sincere about Christmas helps me to prevail over the cultural noise. Removing my childish focus on self is the only way to mature into a deeper understanding of Christmas.
There are four basic elements of Christmas, all pertaining to selflessness, that make Christmas more meaningful as a young adult. Perhaps they can help or encourage you to find a deeper enjoyment in the season.
My prayer for all of us as we mature in our understanding and celebration of Christmas is that God will help us to keep Him and His gift to us as the center of our attentions this season. I pray that He will help to push all the cultural distractions to the backs of our minds, setting Him first and foremost in everything we do as we celebrate His gift to us.
The image of Christmas village in the globe is courtesy of Lancia E. Smith.
Sadie Irene Miller is one of TCP founding team members, joining when she was a young writer finishing high school. She is a proud homeschooler and the oldest daughter of five children. Hanging out with family and friends, playing sports, and writing are some of her favorite pastimes. She is also the co-creator of a small writing group in her area. Her goal is to reach others with the love of Christ through her writing and her example.
A Field Guide to Cultivating ~ Essentials to Cultivating a Whole Life, Rooted in Christ, and Flourishing in Fellowship
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