Christmas Crazies, anyone?
If you caught the Christmas Crazies, you are not alone. Crazy is contagious this time of year.
At Christmas, we can spin between extremes of fantasy and regret, the fun of spending and the crush of debt, the disconnect of feeling alone in the middle of all the social pressure.
No matter what the season, or what the neighbors or the stores or the churches are doing, we have to live our days in a healthy way at a healthy pace that works for us. No manic-panic-sinking-Christmas-Titanic allowed at my house. No pushing for perfect and then screaming at the kids when it doesn’t work out. Been there, done that. Sheesh. Seriously. Those are not the Christmas memories that I’m trying to make.
Below are a few ways to keep the Christmas crazies at bay.
Three ways to Kill the Christmas Crazies
1) Fuel your spirit by spending time with God. Hello. This season is about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Rolling around in glitter is all good, but taking a deep breath and remembering why we are doing it is a key to seasonal peace. Christmas tree fell down? What would Jesus do? Feel sick about spending that much money on that overpriced plastic toy? What would Jesus do? People acting crazy? What would Jesus do?
He came for a reason beyond Christmas. He came to change us, to raise us from the dead in every way. Celebrate Christmas by letting Him change you even in the holiday chaos.
Now, maybe more than any other time of year, I have to focus on who God says I am and what His plans are for me. I’m busier than I’ve ever been–that means I don’t have time to not spend time with God. Spend five minutes every morning in worship, celebrating who God is. Out loud, say every good thing you can think of about God.
What would Jesus do?
Spending time with God can be a challenge. But your thoughts about God and who He is to you are the source of your deep beliefs about what life can be and about yourself. You are made in His image. What you believe about who God is for you is a foundational belief.
The Lord is for me, I will not fear. Ps118:6a
This I know, that God is for me! Ps56:9
I will sing to the LORD because he is good to me. Ps13:6
2) Fuel your soul by thinking healthy thoughts. Thoughts are the source of behaviors, and thoughts come out of the deep core beliefs we hold in our hearts and our minds. Lifestyle and behaviors are the outward expression of these thoughts and beliefs. To change a life, change the thoughts. To change the thoughts, we have to take them under conscious control and submit them to Jesus. He wants to change the deep wrong beliefs of our minds so that we can live an abundant life.
To change a life, change the thoughts.
To take thoughts captive, say “no,” and start speaking a better thought–out loud. I notice myself getting critical and prideful when I get stressed and out of His peace. That is my red flag. When I lose my joy and my ability to give people permission to take the time they need, when I lose my patience and my sense of humor, I need to do a mental inventory–quick–so that I don’t take it out on anyone. I can handle a pretty big to-do list, but even so, it can get heavy at times. I have to know myself well enough to know when to say “no,” when to take a rest, when to stop and refocus my thoughts.
Be prepared by having a verse ready when the crazy tries to come in. Keep a note in your pocket or stuck on your mirror or dashboard with a verse that you can easily see and read out loud.
Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 1Peter5:7
A thief comes only to steal and to kill and to destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance. Jn10:10
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jer29:11
3) Fuel your body by choosing health. A healthy body supports a healthy mind. Comfort-eating and drinking or other self-medicating behaviors feel good in the moment, but we pay later. Poverty always focuses on the moment. Abundance focuses on investments.
Investments don’t always feel good right now–a lot of times, they hurt. Think about exercising or saving money instead of spending it. But in six months, life looks very different for the person living for the whim of now vs. the one investing for tomorrow.
Poverty focuses on the moment. Abundance focuses on investments.
So. Take care of your body! It’s your temple; it’s God’s temple. Get good sleep when you can. Drink water. Eat an apple every day, because, you know what they say. Eat well. Go for a walk. At the mall, while you are shopping, sit down and take a break. Get a salad and water at the food court before you head over to Cinnabon. Hot tea is good, too. Please take care of you. You are part of this human team. We need you.
Christmas is not about working ourselves up to a case of Christmas Crazies. It’s about celebrating the Prince of Peace.
This year, I pray you have a peaceful, wonderful, joyful, beautiful, crazy-free Christmas.
For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Cor 1:2