Michael and I have had endless conversations about Christmas. We discuss the fact that anyone can go on and on saying it’s all about Jesus, but what we value and do at Christmas sometimes tells a different story.

We’ve been in talks about Christmas for years now.

This year it broke me.

I was finally able to see clearly something I’d been missing.  How I’ve made Christmas and all of it’s trappings an idol in my life when God is the ONLY safe thing to “idolize”.  It’s been painful to take stock of the ways that I’ve put Christmas in a place it doesn’t belong.

And then to add insult to Jesus, I’ve told myself (and others) that it’s all about Jesus, and that I’m doing this for Him.

How silly.

I don’t excuse massive consumerism, debt, or the spending of my husband’s hard earned money irresponsibly in the name of Jesus during the the rest of the year.  Why this month?

Like it’s going to make Jesus proud that I made 10 kinds of cookies for people I never talk to at other times of the year, because I’m too busy for them.

But now it seems hard to recover from the shock.  How do I look at Christmas now that my eyes have been opened?

Our love and service of Jesus is an all year extravaganza.  It’s not something we should pack away in the Christmas boxes.

Jesus said “Do this in remembrance of Me”, but he wasn’t talking about the celebration of Christmas. 

I suppose a first step is just plain honesty.  It isn’t really all about Jesus.  It’s a lot about us.

It has a lot to do with pride.  Who is the best cook, who has the prettiest house?  Who has the most amazing re-cap of their year in the christmas card?  Christmas is a lot about looking good to everyone else. It’s also a lot about pleasing people.

Sometimes at the expense of pleasing God.

He deserves all of our heart.  The idolatry of Christmas won’t quit.  We have to decide how much we will do for the people we love, and then be done.  We have to be brave in our faith.  God calls us to live very differently from the world.

We ought to once and for all, heartily put our whole trust in God, and make a total surrender of ourselves to Him, secure that He would not deceive us.  We ought not weary of doing little things for the love of God, who regards not the greatness of the work, but the love with which it is performed.

-Brother Lawrence

Thankfully, loving Jesus isn’t about legalism, so this looks different for each heart and home. We get to choose how best to celebrate His birth.

We can enjoy Christmas, but only worship Jesus.