By Josh Patrick
Do you have children living at home? Instead of coasting through the holidays, I want to encourage you to seize the second half of December as an opportunity to help your kids trust and follow Jesus. In the blink of an eye, the wonder of Christmas can be pushed aside by hurried schedules, stressful family dynamics, and a constant barrage of commercialism. The bright lights and non-stop noise can easily overwhelm the deeper truths of the season. Without an intentional plan to focus on the real Treasure, our lives will be dominated by things that are superficial and shallow.
As you think about and plan for the next couple weeks, consider what would be best for the spiritual health of your family. Find a cozy, distraction-free place, grab your spouse, and talk through these questions together:
1. What do we want our children to say about the way our family celebrated Christmas when they are grown?
2. What current traditions and habits hinder us from embracing Christmas as a season of joy, peace, and hope?
3. What new traditions should we initiate that would clarify the true meaning of Christmas and help everyone in our home trust and follow Jesus?
4. If Jesus lived in our home during the month of December, how would we celebrate this season? What would change? What would remain the same?
5. What do we need to do as a family to ensure that we enter the New Year from a place of fullness and energy, instead of depletion and fatigue?
These questions led my wife and I to completely re-imagine Christmas in our home. We have three daughters – ages 8, 5, and 2. This is a magical time of year for us. More than anything else, we want them to remember Christmas as a time when we slowed down, loved well, and had a blast making much of Jesus. We want them to tell stories of us singing together, reading scripture, praying for each other, serving our neighbors who are in need, and talking about the miracle of Jesus’ incarnation and how incredible it is to have a Redeemer who understands us and is therefore able to help us. We want these memories to be so impactful for our children that they can’t help but pass them on to their own children one day. But these memories won’t be made without a plan.
Time is flying. Christmas is almost here. What’s your plan? Don’t waste your Christmas.