This month is most likely one of your busiest seasons of the year. If your schedule is anything like mine, we cram events, parties, and visiting friends and relatives into December more than any other month. We decorate our homes inside and out to celebrate the Christmas season. Because of our busy schedules, we tend to be overworked and sleep deprived. In the midst of this, it is very easy for us to become cranky and critical of those around us.
I know that when I am overloaded with a long to-do list and limited in time, it is easy for my tolerance level to become very low. My husband can ask a simple question, and my curt response will cause him to ask, “What’s wrong with you?” Suddenly I realize that my overload is causing me to respond unfairly to him. I quickly apologize and communicate that it is a busy time, and I ask him to be patient with me.
Oftentimes instead of enjoying Christmas, we wish the holidays would soon pass. Christmas is a time to enjoy the family. However, families often get together at Christmas and simply tolerate the once-a-year tradition to please the parents. Nothing is more disheartening to parents than having adult siblings fighting among themselves.
Paul wrote in First Thessalonians 5:13, “Remember to live peaceably with each other” (NLT 1996). Of course, we should endeavor to live in peace with everyone. However, it is extremely important that we make peace with our family members. I have heard stories of families with members who have not spoken to each other in years. That is hard for me to fathom. Whatever someone may have done to you or said about you, I encourage you to reconcile that relationship. First Thessalonians 5:15 (NLT 1996) says, “See that no one pays back evil for evil, but always try to do good to each other and to everyone else.”
Life is too short and family relationships too important to allow offense to rob you of fellowship. Make this Christmas the most memorable one of your life by practicing peace and goodwill toward all.
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