The Never-Ending Need for Perfection at Christmas

The Christmas season is upon us, and there is so much work to be done. Decorating our homes, checking off items from our shopping lists, listening to all the jolly songs on the radio, planning festive dinners. Our responsibilities are endless. We want everything to be PERFECT this year. But what happens when things don’t go the way we planned? 

It’s easy to get caught up in perfection. Social media shows us how others are decorating their homes, what they are buying for their families, and how glorious it all looks in a 90 second reel. The desire for “more” begins to creep into our hearts and takes root. 

More decorations for my home. 

More presents for my kids. 

More memories that need to be made.

More pictures to share that show I have it all together.

This need can become so great in our hearts that we can lose sight of what the season is meant to celebrate. Jesus didn’t come in a flashy package with a mother who was photo ready. His father wasn’t there making sure the the light was just right for that perfect family video. The manger was rugged and rough. The barn was full of dirty animals. And yet, God was able to create a space for his son to be born exactly how he planned. 

We long for our Christmases to be perfect, only to see our expectations fall short. We experience frustration when our kids don’t want to participate in making decorations together. Our stress levels rise as we try to make holiday plans and our family does not cooperate. And who does not get frustrated when the gift we wanted so badly for that special someone is sold out? 

There can also be deep hurts we carry from our past that make it hard to enjoy the Christmas season. Perfection is an unachievable feat no matter what the circumstances are. 

The only perfect thing about Christmas is Jesus Christ, our Savior. 

Let us remember who this season is about this year, as we put down perfection and pick up gratefulness. 

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