Keeping the Spirit of Christmas Alive Throughout the Year

Most of us would say that Christmas is our favorite holiday.  It has often been said that Christmas is for children, and while that is true, it is also for adults.  Even as adults we anxiously look forward to the arrival of Christmas.  We find ourselves becoming more and more excited as the day draws near and the decorations begin to appear.  It is that one time of the year when it seems people can lay aside their differences and live harmoniously with each other.  During the Christmas season the air seems fresher, our demeanor seems more optimistic, and we want to do good for our fellowman.  During Christmas, we speak of peace more than any other time of the year.  We become more generous, and we want to make our lives and the lives of others a little better.  You cannot listen to a Christmas song without hearing the words believe, peace, hope, love, and joy.  We hear these words all year long, but they seem to have a special meaning at Christmas.  

As Christmas approaches, we find ourselves going out of our way to do nice things for people.  We tend to smile more, and we feel a warm glow inside.  Even though the preparations for Christmas can be stressful, we find ourselves rising above them and doing them with joy in our hearts.  We reflect on the meaning of Christmas, and in general we try to be better people.  Christmas truly is the most wonderful time of the year.  

However, why do we think that the feeling of Christmas has to be relegated to one day during the year?  Why do we rob ourselves of that feeling for all the other 364 days?  Why can’t every day be Christmas in our hearts?  We celebrate Christmas to commemorate the birth of Jesus.  There are so many lessons that we can learn from the story of Jesus’ birth.  We can learn to be patient and to believe in something that is miraculous.  We can learn to be generous, hopeful, and obedient.  Jesus is, after all, the gift of peace that has been given to the entire world.  It is a peace that can last all year if we allow it to.  With God and His goodness, every day can be and should be Christmas.  The miracle of Christmas can be evident in our lives every single day.  

We do not have to wait until December 25th to be at peace.  We do not have to wait until Christmas to do for our fellowman and put the needs of others ahead of our own.  We often hear stories of people doing wonderful things for others during Christmas.  We collect money for the needy, we think about those who are less fortunate than we are, and we are encouraged to help them.  We can do that all year long.  We do not have to wait to be generous.  A generous heart is a peaceful heart, and when we do for others we do just as much good for ourselves as we do for them.  So, I ask you, what is wrong with walking around with a smile on your face, joy in your heart, and peace on your mind all year long?  

The answer is absolutely nothing.  Christmas may be one day, but it can be a way of life.  It should be our goal to make it a way of life.  We can feel that joyous feeling all year, and that is what God wants for our lives.  He wants us to be at peace, to have hope and faith, and to believe in something far bigger than ourselves.  So, how can we do that?  We can do it by living our lives the way God intends us to.  We can do it by having faith that God is in control and letting Him be in control.  We can do it by allowing other people to live their lives and not trying to control them.  We can do it by looking for opportunities to help others and going out of our way to perform random acts of kindness for people.  We can do it by allowing God’s peace to fill our hearts and truly believing that He can do that for us and all the other people in the world.  We have often said, “I really need to do this; after all, it is Christmas.”  Maybe we should be saying, “I really need to do this; after all, it is another day that God has given me.”  

As Christmas approaches and we begin to feel ourselves getting that Christmas glow, let’s say to ourselves that we are going to make this feeling last all year.  But let’s not just say it . . . let’s do it!  Let’s try to see the world through our Christmas eyes instead of our everyday eyes.  Let’s try to fill the world with peace, faith, hope, and love every day, and let’s go out of way to be good to the people we love and even the people we do not know.  If we can truly do that, then every day can be the most wonderful time of the year, and the world can be a more peaceful place, because PEACE MATTERS