Merry & Bright: Celebrating Christmas Every Day

Devotional

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year


“I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month.” — Harlan Miller


At Christmas, we’re usually just a little softer than we are the rest of the year. We smile a little more, laugh a little more, and show kindness a little more. We let people come into our lane on the highway, we drop some money into a bucket outside of a store, and we say nice things to people that may tend to annoy us because, “Well, it’s Christmas.”  


But, once December 25 has come and gone, we pack up the decorations and gifts and tuck them away with the Christmas spirit. You know, the Christmas spirit that led us to be a little more patient, give a little more money, and speak a little more kindly. 


For many people, Christmas is a wonderful time of year. It’s easier for us to be loving and kind during the season. Because it’s such a short time in the year, we think, “I can ignore this one thing—it’s Christmas, after all.” To think that we can act this way year-round seems like an impossibility. But if we could see people through a different lens and just treat people the way we want to be treated, we could make this our reality. 


Pastor Craig Groeschel says, “We judge other people by their actions but we judge ourselves by our intentions.” What if instead of assuming the worst in others, we assume the best? What if we give others the benefit of the doubt in their actions toward us. Even at Christmas, people are still imperfect and will occasionally offend us. But if we could understand that everyone’s hurting because of something and that we all need a little extra kindness extended toward us.


That woman who seemed inconsiderate and cut you off at the store? Maybe her world just fell apart because she miscarried. The kid who won’t quit acting up in his classroom disturbing others? Maybe his parents are divorcing and he doesn’t know how to handle his pain. The pastor who didn’t visit with you enough in the church lobby? Maybe his private world is paralyzing him due to a wayward daughter. 


We can’t assume what people intend, and we can’t assume they’ll always live up to our expectations. Let’s offer the same grace that we want offered to us. Not just during a fun season of celebrating, but for the entire year. 


Reflect



  • Do you find yourself being extra kind during the Christmas holiday season? Or do you feel that you are consistently steady in this area?

  • What do you need to do to continually treat people kindly, day in and day out?