What do you think the Spirit of Christmas is?
Look around you. There is the business spirit of make it or break it. If the business doesn’t make money and profit in the Christmas season, they won’t make it the rest of the year. The pressure is on.
There is the spirit of work; those in retail, restaurants, travel, and service industries will work long hours to keep customers happy. They often will miss time with family because they will be required to work long hours or overtime. Others are happy they can at least get a job during the holiday season rush, when they can’t any other time. But long hours, stress, and trying to be charming to rushed shoppers, brings real tiredness that dampens the holiday.
There is the spirit of busi-ness; busy going to Christmas programs, Christmas parties, Christmas open houses, all the Christmas parades, Christmas gatherings, Christmas work events, and so on and so on. The calendar is full and there is little time to enjoy the festive occasions. Trying not to miss anything leads to missing out of where they are.
There is the spirit of perfectionism; everything has to be perfect. The house has to be decorated perfectly, the menu perfect, the yard decorations perfect, the gifts perfectly wrapped, the gift selections perfect for every person, and if anything goes wrong, heaven forbid---look out!
There is the spirit of “making Christmas;” the mom, or other person who is responsible for planning Christmas. These folks do the shopping, inviting, cleaning, cooking, wrapping, decorating, errand running, fixing other people’s problems during the Christmas season, babysitting, money lending, and doing their best to provide the ideal Christmas for everyone involved.
There is the spirit of “give me;” the person who manipulates others to get all they can out of them for Christmas. They may play the sympathy card, or guilt card, or “poor me” card, or “you don’t do enough for me” card. These folks are in it for all they can get.
There is the party spirit; the person who looks forward to buying alcohol and getting drunk during the holidays. They want to indulge, eat too much, drink too much, party too much. They may not even remember Christmas when it is over for them.
What makes the difference to those who have the Spirit of Christmas in Christ? These people want to give to others because God through Christ Jesus has given them so much! These folks are filled with joy, they take time to do things to make others happy and feel loved because they want to. They don’t seem too stressed, or too tired, or too worried; they enjoy the people and celebrations around them because they are celebrating the birth of Jesus in their hearts. Family time is not a burden or stress to be gotten through because Christ binds them together in grace and acceptance of each one.
May the genuine Spirit of Christmas, Christ, come to you quickly and fill your heart with joy, hope, and peace. Luke 2:10-11, “But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.’