STOP, LOOK, AND LISTEN
If you discover yourself becoming dulled to the joys of
the season, STOP! Slow the pace down and become still,
taking time to LOOK and LISTEN. Take a winter walk, curl
up in a favorite chair or before the fireplace.
Helen Keller once observed, "The seeing see little."
So feel the comfort of the glow of a candle, or the red of
the poinsettias. Listen with new ears to laughter and
bells, and to the expression of love of found in the
story of the first Christmas.
BE WILLING TO BE SURPRISED
Remember that God can come in the least likely ways - a
Holy Child born in a village stable, a brightly shining
star, an angel song in the night sky. Watch for Him to
come in equally surprising ways to you, too. When we live
as if God is going to "surprise" us at any moment, in any
way, in any place, then He usually does!
FIND WAYS TO ANTICIPATE CHRISTMAS
How about keeping an advent calendar? Commit yourself
to perform at least one special act of kindness for
each day of advent. Write a note, letter, card or
e-mail to someone to express your gratitude, to tell
someone you love them, to forgive an old hurt, or just
to count your blessings.
FREE YOUR CHILDLIKE SPIRIT
Jesus held up childlikeness as a quality to be cultivated
(Mark 10:15). Children are experts at dreaming up simple
things as delights that adults don't, or have forgotten
how to do. Can't you picture a little boy singing
"Jingle Bells" to a plastic Jesus in a store? Christmas
often comes in precious moments like this, when we
spontaneously show our adoration for the Baby in the manger.
SHARE THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS WITH SOMEONE ELSE
Nothing multiplies the sense of wonder in your life like
giving it away. The more you share (not just things,
but yourself) the brighter Christmas grows.
I hope that these simple steps will help you, or someone you
can share these with, keep the wonder and excitement of
Christmas alive during this busy season. Just remember that
"Jesus is the reason for the season."