Some Christmas Advice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas is my most favorite time of the year.  I grew up in the northern part of Wisconsin, and my most valuable and tenderest recollections are my Christmases.  I was raised in a Norwegian Lutheran church, (Think: Lutefisk.). Many memories flow from that; the cold, the snow and the tree and the presents.  I have been made a ‘rich’ man through all of these great memories.

I remember our annual Nativity play at Church. I remember the sticky, caramel-covered ‘popcorn ball’ each one of us would get from the church ladies aid.  I fondly remember a very bleak Christmas when there was no money to be had for presents. A local charity came through at the last minute with gifts. I was profoundly touched by all of this, and more. Even when it was bad, it was still very good.

I have no real way of instilling any of this to you. However I do exhort you, go out of your way to minister to the young hearts you have contact with.  Help them believe.  Make it easy for them to touch the miracle of the manger.  Let them leave your company yearning for  God’s presence in their day. 

It won’t take much, maybe keen imagination on your part.  But those things you do may spark, ignite and become a blaze that will direct them through their lives.  Be kinder than you need to. Purposefully do things that will impact them, even small things often carry an astonishingly strong influence.

You may be in the thick of it. You have lost the purpose and meaning of this day. But I’m pretty sure any failure isn’t permanent. But at least, try to do as much as you’re what able. Let us know if we could pray for you this season, alaskabibleteacher@gmail.com.

 

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A Lutefisk History – Lutefisk Recipe (Lyefish) http://whatscookingamerica.net/History/LutefiskHistory.htm

Christmas Carols for the Psychiatrically Challenged

 

 “A cheerful heart is good medicine,
    but a broken spirit saps a        person’s strength.”

Proverbs 17:22, NLT

SCHIZOPHRENIA

– Do You Hear What I Hear?

 

MULTIPLE PERSONALITY

– We Three Kings Disoriented Are

 

DEMENTIA

– I Think I’ll Be Home For Christmas

 

NARCISSISTIC

– Hark The Herald Angels Sing (About Me)

 

BIPOLAR MANIA

– Deck the Halls and Walls and House and Lawn and Streets and Stores and Office and Town …or Deck the Halls and Spare No Expense!

 

PARANOIA

– Santa Claus is Coming To Get Me

 

BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER

– You Better Watch Out, I’m Gonna Cry, I’m Gonna Pout, then MAYBE I’ll tell you why.

 

OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE

– Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock…

 

PASSIVE AGGRESSIVE

– On the First Day of Christmas, My True Love Gave to M(and then took it all away).

 

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This Special Place, Where it is Always Christmas

“This Gospel anticipates a world far different from C.S. Lewis’s Narnia,where it is “always winter, and never Christmas.” But the promise of the Gospel is that it is always Christmas. To be “in Christ” is to enjoy each morning as a Christmas morning with the family of God, celebrating the gift of God around the tree of life.”

–Kevin Van Hoozer

Christmas can be a torment and tribulation for so many. I have no doubt it brings grief. Family, friends, finances– mixed liberally with heavy doses of materialism and manipulation will always bring us issues.  The music and decorations are mostly mere Novocaine (which doesn’t always work). Stress builds up. And we want none of that.

Being mentally or physically ill often accentuates these issues. I’m not sure why exactly, but suicide increases during this season. Perhaps the challenges Christmas brings just overwhelm a person who is struggling hard just to make it.

“Christmas is for children. But it is for grown-ups too. Even if it is a headache, a chore, and a nightmare, it is a period of necessary defrosting of chilled hidebound hearts.”  

–Lenora Mattingly Weber

As I think about Christmas, it is helpful for me to see it as a “mirror.” It is my reflection back to me. What we see, is who we are. If we have issues in our own life, the Season will just magnify them.  But this doesn’t mean its bad, far from it. There is always conflict, but this spiritual combat can bring us success. Some things must be fought for.

I’m convinced that in all of this, there is opportunity.  The chance to connect to “Christmas”. The very idea is quite strange.  But Christmas can be an exquisite treat.  It is made by mixing love and truth in generous portions. As we look hard for it, there is something that moves us to a place far beyond us. Grace makes us to stand and look, perhaps for the first time.

When we truly process this, we’ll find “Christmas”. And honestly, it is more than a holiday. For the Christian, it is special time. And yes, there will be times when it is trying, but in my own thinking, Christmas has become a time of great joy and anticipation.

It won’t take much, maybe a little imagination on your part. But those things you do may ignite and become a blaze that will direct them through their lives. Be kinder then you need to.

“The universal joy of Christmas is certainly wonderful. We ring the bells when princes are born, or toll a mournful dirge when great men pass away. Nations have their red-letter days, their carnivals and festivals, but once in the year and only once, the whole world stands still to celebrate the advent of a life. Only Jesus of Nazareth claims this world-wide, undying remembrance. You cannot cut Christmas out of the Calendar, nor out of the heart of the world.”   

Anonymous

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