We have five days until Christmas. But, I don’t need to tell you that, do I? You already know. Before we get lost in the hustle and bustle of this week, however, I’d like to take a moment to pause. To pause and take a deep breath. And to shift our thoughts from making our lists and checking them twice, to making this different kind of Christmas memorable.
We’ve been discussing here lately that without a doubt, Christmas 2020 is likely a different kind of Christmas for many of us. Thanks to the pandemic, some of us aren’t able to celebrate this Christmas like we’re used to. Some of us are missing loved ones this year. Many of us are longing for our absent family traditions. Some of us are just trying to keep our heads above water.
All of us, however, are feeling the affects of this virus in one way or another.
So, with this year being so different and unusual, and without our typical celebrations, how can we make this different kind of Christmas memorable? What can we do to not be so sad on Christmas day? How can we make this season count for something, instead of just wishing it away?
My intentions here aren’t to whittle our Christmas down to a list of things to do. Because, that’s not Christmas. Christmas isn’t about doing. It’s about being. Christmas is about the greatest gift of all time, coming to earth in the form of a baby. (We’ll talk more about that in a moment.) But, I’ve come up with some simple ways you and I can still make this Christmas memorable. Sometimes changing our perspective makes all the difference. At least it does for me.
How to Make this Different Kind of Christmas Memorable
Read the Christmas Story.
When our kids were young and still under our roof, we would read the Christmas story each year, usually on Christmas Eve. This helps keep our focus on the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of the Savior of the world. I used (and still do) Bible Study Fellowship’s format and suggested Bible readings. You can find that here.
Have a family slumber party under the tree.
Our kids would have loved this! Yours might, too. Pull out pillows and blankets and snuggle next to each other under or near the Christmas tree. It’ll be a slumber party you or your children won’t soon forget! This would be especially fun on Christmas night.
Enjoy some quiet.
Take some time for you. Turn off the t.v. and the music. Sit and think. Soak in the surroundings. Take out a journal or a piece of paper and jot down your thoughts, your feelings, your wishes, and your dreams. Relax and breathe.
Pray and thank God.
In this time of quiet talk to God. Count your blessings and thank Him for them. Thank Him for how He has provided for you throughout 2020, and for how He continues to show up in your life. Write these blessings down so you can be encouraged when you revisit this list later. Thank Him that He will never leave you. Ever. After all, He is Immanuel.
“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).Matthew 1:23 NIV
Try a new hot chocolate recipe on Christmas morning.
Surprise your family (or treat yourself) with a new hot chocolate recipe on Christmas morning. This White Hot Chocolate looks amazing!
Video chat with your family.
If you can’t be together, but still want to, try video chatting with your loved ones. Do it over Christmas dinner, or opening presents, or relaxing in the living room. Just because we aren’t physically gathering together, doesn’t mean we can’t still be together in other forms.
Listen to Christmas music.
Music has a way of lifting our spirits and brightening our days. Turn on the Christmas music and sing along. Why not turn your kitchen floor into a dance floor for an evening?
Take a tour of outdoor Christmas lights.
This may be my favorite thing to do. I love grabbing some hot chocolate or coffee or tea and heading out in our vehicle to gaze upon outdoor Christmas lights in local neighborhoods. There’s just something about Christmas lights I love! Here’s a guide that may help.
Send a Christmas note in the mail.
Who has been on your heart lately? Who could use a pick-me-up in the mail? We all could, couldn’t we? This doesn’t have to be a fancy card, but your handwritten note might be the encouragement someone would benefit from. Your note could make someone’s Christmas memorable.
Surprise the neighbors with treats or Christmas carols.
Bake up some treats and bless your neighbors with a plate of them. Or go Christmas caroling in your neighborhood with your family. This is a great socially distant way to bless others!
Who can you and I serve this season? At a local soup kitchen? Our neighbor? A friend? A coworker? How can we make another’s Christmas memorable? When we help someone else, we help ourselves. What joy it is to serve others!
Yes, this Christmas may be different, but it can still be memorable.
Who knows? Maybe this year will be the year we will remember for many years to come. In good ways. Maybe this will be the Christmas that will touch our hearts and refresh our weary souls. Not necessarily for our sakes but for the sakes of others and for God’s glory.
How will you make this Christmas memorable? Will you share your thoughts and ideas below? I’d love to pray for you regarding them.
May God bless you in many special ways this Christmas… with His presence, His peace, and His provision. Thanks for being here, friend. You are loved!