When Traditions Change
by Grace Fox
Time-honored traditions are an important part of Christmastime. So how can we respond well when circumstances change those traditions?
For years, our immediate family celebrated Christmas at my son and daughter-in-law’s. Doing so spared them the stress of traveling with seven young children and made for easier bedtimes. This year, however, they’re expecting a new baby within days of December 25. Combining a newborn with a houseful of overnight guests during this already-busy season is understandably too much. So, I’ll miss the tradition of being together as a family this year.
I’ll also miss the tradition of setting out a nativity scene. My husband and I moved aboard a sailboat several months ago, and space is limited. I bought an artificial tree that stands about eight inches high, and I might be able to string a few outside colored lights on the mast, but that’s it. And as far as cooking a turkey goes—forget it. My oven is too small. I suspect a turkey breast will suffice instead.
Life brings change, and change can be tough sometimes. I’m learning to release my grip on the old, loved traditions and open my hand to receive the blessings brought by the new.
I’m also learning to be as flexible as a wet noodle. I will bend to accommodate whatever this Christmas season brings. I will choose to be content in all circumstances. And I choose to focus on Jesus—the reason for this joyous season.
Grace Fox is an international speaker and the author of nine books including Moving from Fear to Freedom: A Woman’s Guide to Peace in Every Situation. She co-directs International Messengers Canada, a ministry that partners with 225 missionaries in 26 countries. www.gracefox.com