Finding Relief from Christmas Pressure

Since my 31 Days Series has extended into December, I wanted to take the idea of living where intention meets grace and apply it to Christmas season, because that seems to be a time when so many of us begin to feel overwhelmed by the idea that we need to do more and  be better. Last week, I shared my own thoughts on embracing the imperfect at Christmas, and so now I thought it would be helpful to hear some thoughts from others who are doing the same.

Today I would like to introduce you to Lara Williams, an amazing and anointed woman of God that I had the privilege of meeting at Allume. She’s a mom, a writer, a speaker, and even a beat poet. You can find her on Twitter and at her blog, To Overflowing. I am honored to have her share with us today about how she is finding relief from Christmas pressure.

I felt it this weekend — and just after writing about keeping focused this Christmas season. Naturally. It’s the weight of stuff and traditions and good deeds and tiny little blinky lights and the destitute and the fatherless and… (now breathing into paper bag). I’m certain that the seasonal pressure could push some sweet people completely over the edge.

So as I waited in our gas-guzzling vehicle, while the lumberjack of a man loaded our Christmas tree, with a list creating itself in my brain as if on auto-pilot, I remembered to pause. I remembered to stop. Thank you, Lord.

Because all. we. have. is. this. moment. And if I choose to waste it worrying about tomorrow and the 1003 things I think I “need” to do, then I lose the gift of here and now. And if I forfeit the gift of here and now enough, then in the end I will forfeit days, weeks, or even years. And that would be a travesty.

“This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”  Psalm 118:24

Christmas will happen. In 20 days we’ll wake up to Christmas morn. In the meantime, crumbling under the weight of holiday pressure is optional.

10 ways to find relief from Christmas pressure:

  1. Sing “Silent Night.” (Classic peace-bringer)
  2. Choose one thing to take off your Christmas “to-do” list. (I dare you.)
  3. Start laughing uncontrollably. (Think “Money Pit”)
  4. Ask God’s opinion on how you should spend your time. (aka “pray”)
  5. Bundle up and go for a walk. (Or run)
  6. Choose just one thing to get done today. (Only one)
  7. Hug your Christmas tree. (Or not)
  8. Get alone and mentally escape to your happy place for 2 minutes. (Set a timer)
  9. Look at family pictures of past Christmas’.
  10. Decide that loving the person in front of you is the only real task at hand.

Fill me, Lord…

What else would you add to this list?

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Cultivating Intention

Are you at a place where you need some relief from the Christmas pressure? From the list Lara provided, choose one or two of the activities and try them out this week.

Cultivating Grace

As Lara reminded us, each day of this season is a day that the Lord has made, and we should rejoice and be glad in it. If you are struggling in the rejoicing and being glad part (as I often am), I pray that the God of hope will fill us with joy and peace as we trust in Him this Christmas season (Romans 15:13).

Always,

Amanda

This post is Day 21 of the 31 day series I am writing on cultivating a life of intention and grace. For a complete index of posts in this series, click here. To read more 31 Days series, please visit The Nester.

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Comments

  1. Thanks for having me, Amanda!

  2. I adored this list. It made me laugh. Several times. It really helps you gain perspective. How delightful to ‘visit’ with Lara here in your space. Thanks for having us all over today. ;)

  3. Lara I loved this list! Awesome!

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