Christmas is, for many, a holiday more stressful than sacred.
Having been in a stressful job (trial lawyer) for more than twenty years and a veteran of forty-six Christmases, I felt sufficiently experienced to offer 3 tips for a less stressed Christmas.
1. Amazon.com. For me, driving from store to store in search of the perfect gift in bumper-to-bumper traffic ranks up there with a prolonged waterboarding experience at Guantanamo Bay. So, don’t do it. Put on something comfortable, grab a cup of your favorite holiday beverage, belly-up to to your computer and go to amazon.com. They sell practically everything, they gift wrap and deliver, sometimes the next day.
2. Recognize Relational Opportunities. The inability to get along with relatives with whom we are forced to interact during the holidays is a major stressor for many during the holidays. I’ve been fortunate on this one because I have the best in-laws you could imagine. I love spending time with them. But if you have not been so fortunate, try seeing the holidays as an opportunity to repair rather than simply endure relationships. Christians have been given the ministry of reconciliation. (2 Cor. 5:18). If you just default into the flesh when you are around family, you are missing a great opportunity.
3. Spend Time with The King. Spend time studying the Christmas stories in the Gospels in the days leading to Christmas. Doing so keeps me focused on the purpose of Christmas and in communication with King Jesus. The peace and perspective that comes from spending time with Him is a good antidote for the stress that is so prevalent during the holidays.
I hope these tips help you as much as they have me. If not, there is always egg nog (with a little brandy of course). GS