5 Ways to Have a Merry Christmas

Christmas gifts.

Christmas is just around the corner.  Here are 5 suggestions to make the Christmas season merry:

  1. Don’t Overspend.  While exchanging gifts can be a wonderfully rewarding experience for family and friends, gift-buying and gift-receiving isn’t what it’s all about.  Don’t put yourself or your family in a bad financial spot by trying to “keep up with the Jones’.”  By spending more than you can afford, even with the good intention of paying off those bills in full right after Christmas, you will be adding unnecessary stress and financial burdens on yourself and your family.  Spend appropriately.  Give from the heart and your entire family, including your kids, will be grateful (especially in long the run).
  2. Make a Donation to Charity.  Christmastime reminds us that we have responsibility to the community in which we live.  Talk as a family about who you can help and decide together to sacrifice something yourselves so that a charity can benefit.  There are hundreds of good charities out there.  Making a donation to one will help your family experience the true meaning of Christmas – sacrifice.
  3. Reconcile a Strained Relationship.  Forgiving others, and seeking forgiveness from others, is difficult.  But, reconciling a relationship that has been on the rocks for a while will be one of the best gifts you can give yourself.  Reach out to that family member or friend, tell them you are sorry for what has happened between the two of you, and tell them that you miss them and want to make things right.  Looking past whatever grievance you may have is worth it!
  4. Go to Church.  Make sure that you keep the focus of the holiday on Jesus Christ.  Make going to church on all of the Sundays this month, as well as any special Christmas services that you can, the priority for you and your family.  Worshipping God together reminds us that we are part of the body of Christ and that all we have is a gift from God Himself.
  5. Serve Someone.  While it is important to provide financially for churches and charities at this time of year, it is equally important to reach out and help someone who needs it.  There is something special about hands-on, face-to-face service of someone in need.  Whether you serve at the local soup kitchen, take food to a neighbor, rake leaves for the elderly, or invite someone to Christmas dinner who doesn’t have anywhere else to go, you will BE a blessing and RECEIVE a blessing  when you sacrifice some time and energy to brighten the Christmas season for someone else.

“For God so loved the world that he GAVE his only son …” John 3:16

Comments welcome:  What are your plans for making Christmas Merry this year?

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