Feeding My Faith, Not My Face
BOOMER publisher Lori Ross wishes readers a wonderful holiday season.
My childhood Christmases weren’t the secular ones I experienced later in life. Santa Claus and gifts played their part, but on their own, Christmas would have been hollow and shallow. At the center was baby Jesus and religious traditions to honor Him. I loved going door to door with friends singing my favorite Christmas carols (and all of them were my favorite) and being welcomed wholeheartedly at each home. Catholic children enjoy a mini-Christmas on December 6, the feast of St. Nicholas. December mornings marked something new on the Advent calendar. And I loved midnight Mass on Christmas Eve.
I remember all those things … but more than just remembering, I can go back and FEEL the openness of heart that marked Christmastime. There was purity and joy and goodness and peace that the rest of the year couldn’t live up to.
LOSING THE REAL CHRISTMAS
It was my own fault. I let that type of Christmas go over time. I don’t really know how it happened because it was so gradual. Beautiful Christmas carols were replaced with inane songs about grandmas getting run over by reindeer. By my middle-age years, the season became more of a “to-do” list for a working woman with perfectionist holiday tendencies … finding the perfect gifts, wrapping the seemingly endless number of presents into works-of-art packages (all done in the middle of the night after a full day’s work), decorating the home indoors and out, and entertaining with buffets of delicious, throw-caution-to-the-wind menu offerings. “Excessive” became a good word to describe the feeling of this season.
What I’m realizing is that Christ moved from the center to the side. This day became more like every other overhyped, commercial, secular day. Well, maybe more … kind of like the Presidents’ Day, Fourth of July and Back-To-School sales wrapped up in one.
WANTING MORE THROUGH WANTING LESS
I would be lying if I said I wanted to sack all parties and gift giving and decorating, though … I do enjoy them. But I want more … and less.
So this year I will consciously open my heart again and find the purity and joy and goodness and peace of Christmas. I will aim to be less about excess and put Christ at the center, as He should have been all along. I have plans this Christmas … to feed my faith, not my face.
Wishing you openness of heart, too, in whatever manner you choose to find it.