You can call me Christmas Crazy if you want, but when I stumbled across “Christmas in July” on the Hallmark Channel this past weekend, I was delighted! My husband and I enjoyed TWO cute Christmasy movies on Sunday evening, then my granddaughter showed up and things got really crazy as she tuned in before dinner and watched until the shows went off at 10:00 p.m. That’s a LOT of Christmas movies! Some a cute and definitely put us in the holiday spirit while others were simply movies that were set at Christmastime – those we can live without.
The upshot of all of the Christmas cheer is that this morning we are making Christmas cookies! The dough is in the refrigerator and we will soon be rolling and cutting out stars and crosses and snowmen and trees. The icing is ready and my son will soon join us for a decorating bonanza!
It seems I have created a Christmas tradition that, once the movies started, was destined to be played out – even if it is July! I watched as my granddaughter (now too big for her cookie apron) mixed the dough and then cleaned up the mess while she waits for the dough to chill. I was stunned, to say the least, to find the kitchen counter all clean. This was a first! When I expressed my appreciation to her she said, “You taught me that, Grandma”.
At fourteen, she is a young lady. But even as I watched her I was reminded of all the years of holiday baking and decorating, and the joy that fills my home as people come to celebrate and “help”. Traditions. I’m praying that they will always be a part of my family’s lives and that they will never become burdensome but will always bring them joy and memories of happy times.
As I watched my granddaughter this morning I also began to pray something else: that the Christian beliefs I have lived in front of them would become ingrained in their hearts. It is so often true that children are watching us more than they are listening to us. They watch and they learn what we believe and whether or not we actually believe what we say, because when our words do not line up with our actions they are the first to notice it. There is nothing more humbling than to hear the voice of a child saying “But I thought you said we shouldn’t ……” You fill in the blank.
Just as my granddaughter learned to clean up after herself by watching me, so I pray she has learned to lean on Jesus just by watching me. My prayer today is that my life would reflect what I believe and know about Lord Jesus and that others will find Him simply by watching me.
Ephesians 5:1-2 Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children 2 and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. (New International Version)