Christmas is supposed to be a time of joy and happiness and celebration, especially if you are a Christian and believe in the birth of Jesus. But often that joy gets lost in ugly thoughts, words, motives and actions
It is sad but true that when you have ugly thoughts, words, motives and actions that it’s often directed toward people you love the most. The people closest to us are the ones that bear the brunt of your ugliness and my ugliness – especially during the holiday season because those are the people we are around and the ones who see the stress we are under.
But it doesn’t have to be this way!
The first thing we have to do is untangle our mind
Untangle Your Mind from Negativity
My favorite Christmas movie all time is Christmas Vacation and I love this scene here where Clark gives Rusty a tangled up mess of Christmas lights to sort out.
One of the tricky parts about Christmas is setting up the Christmas lights, they can be very frustrating to untangle!
Untangling our minds can be just as tedious and daunting.
It takes years to formulate our thought processes and the default places to where our mind goes. And as our thoughts go, so go our words and actions.
New Testament author, Paul of Tarsus gives an idea how untangle the mind, he says: Rejoice! And he says it again, Rejoice!
Humans tend to find more reasons to grumble than they do to complain. It’s easy to come up with a list of all the reasons you should be discouraged. These feelings of frustration and stress affect our thinking. They make us want to give up, lose hope, they make us jaded.
It all begins in our mind with ugly thoughts…
But what we really need is to have a one track mind for Good News.
Get a One-Track Mind with Good News
Normally people say a one-track mind is a bad thing, but in this case we are going to call it a good thing, actually, we are going to call it Good News!
This time of year it’s fun to watch the Peanuts Christmas Special
I love it when he says, “I bring your tidings of great joy which will be for all the people.”
It’s Good News! For All People! That includes you! The birth of Jesus was the Good News and we can receive that today. This is the reason Christmas is the most wonderful time of year, because of the birth of a baby who was the God who came near us in the flesh.
Untangle your mind from the negative things and remember to be thankful for the good things, the Good News because…
A Grateful Mind is a Joyful Mind
Sometimes we think that once we get all the things we want, then we will finally be joyful. We think that once everything just goes our way then we can finally be joyful.
This is backward…There are tons of people who have everything and everything goes their way but they are not joyful.
We have to become good at reminding ourselves of all the Good News reasons to be thankful and joyful.
It is through gratitude that our anger and frustration can be untangled toward love.
In the house I grew up in when you walk in you enter the kitchen and the dining room is off to the right and then beyond that is the living room. It’s one of those houses built in the early 70’s so the living room is down a step from everything else. There is a big 8’ opening to step down in there. Every year at Christmas my mom takes all the Christmas cards they get in the mail and tapes them up and around that entryway. By Christmas Eve that opening is covered in Christmas cards and visually it framed in the Christmas tree sitting in the corner.
As you see all those cards it’s a constant reminder of all the people that have shared in their love with the family, all the reasons to be grateful. I love the fact that in order to get to the tree and the presents we had to pass through that frame of love and cards.
It’s a great reminder of the type of love that needs to be extended at Christmas.
It’s too easy to forget when we are in the midst of our ugly thoughts, our stressful feelings, our frustrations.
During this season I invite you to take some reflective time to consider all the reasons you have to be joyful. You can untangle your minds and fully embrace the Christmas season for all that it is and all that it could be
Take time today and reflect on the blessings in your life. What are they? Think on these things and be thankful.
Maybe this one little thing could light up your Christmas like never before.