By: Janna Adams
The holidays are upon us and that means food, traditions, and the people with whom we share our genetic make up. Being around family can be comforting, but in the midst of buying presents, planning get-togethers, and trying to decide whether to decorate the top of the tree with an angel or a star, family can wreck your holiday spirit as quickly as your great-grandfather bringing up politics during dinner.
So how do we handle the drama that comes with putting three generations in the same small living room together and forcing them to talk about the weather? It can be difficult to remember, but to keep from locking yourself in the nearest coat closet and eating pie while scrolling through Instagram, keep in mind why we get together with family this time of year.
To Celebrate Something Bigger Than Us
I don’t have to tell you the reason we celebrate Christmas—but it can be easy to forget that beyond the eye-rolls and annoying questions, we’re in the midst of celebrating the birth of Jesus…when God sent his son to save this world. And spending time with family means the opportunity to share that celebration with family who may not know the story of Jesus’s love for them, or the opportunity to come together and remember why it’s important to share it with others.
To Spend Time with Those Who Love Us
Spending time with relatives isn’t always the most appealing thing to fit into your schedule (looking at you, in-laws), but we often take for granted the opportunity we’re given to see our family during the holidays. Those who serve in the military, parents or children who work overseas to provide for their loved ones, and people who’ve experienced loss of family members all would give anything to spend Christmas with family. If you’re fortunate enough to have someone to read the Christmas story alongside, cherish that. It might even melt the iciness of an ongoing argument to think about how lucky you are to see your second cousin twice a year.
As stressful as the holidays can be—we’re supposed to enjoy them! Use the time you have with your family to leave work in the back of your brain and embrace the break. Odds are most of us would rather be eating food in a recliner listening to our brother talk about his college classes than at our desk working on that looming project.
Nobody said getting along with family was easy…mostly because it’s usually not. But it is a privilege to get to spend the holidays with loved ones. Now go grab a cookie and let your grandma ask about your new job.