As you can tell I go through writing fits. I’ll do a really good job for a few days and then it seems I fail for a few months. Every day I think, “I really want to write something for my blog today.” And then I sit around, for a few hours, trying to think of something to write about. Today started out as one of those days and then it hit me.
At Christmastime I think it is really easy to get sucked into the consumerism and “I Need” syndrome. I love to give people the best gifts I can, which can be hard when you are on a tight budget. And as much as I do not like to admit this, sometimes buying gifts can get to be depressing. When that happens I realize how skewed my viewpoint is. I think that this is especially easy for churches to do. When your church is deep into the holidays it is hard to realize how far you have fallen from the true meaning of the season.
I would tend to think that December is one of the high points for churches doing marketing, but maybe, like gift giving, they are doing it for the wrong reason. When you start a marketing campaign around the holidays it is important to have specific goals to focus on, so when you start to get dragged deeper into gimmicks and hype you can look back and say, “look from where we have fallen from.”
There have been several times already this December (and it is only the fourth) that I have had to take a step back and say, “Wait, why am I doing this?” Here is an example: I am in charge of the children’s Christmas program this Christmas, which is happening this coming Sunday. I have been freaking out for about a month now about everything being perfect. Saturday night it hit me, why do I want this to be perfect? The answers I came up with: I do not want people to be disappointed or think it was bad, I do not want the kids to be embarrassed about it, and I’m a perfectionist. That’s when I stepped back and whacked myself in the head and said, “Really Lauren, those are your reasons?” I was struck with how selfish I had been and with how I totally missed the point of this Christmas program. Since then whenever I get stressed or feel myself getting dragged down I just ask myself, “Lauren, why are you doing this children’s program?” And then I reply to myself, “For the glory of God.” It has been amazing how much that has changed my attitude.
I think we, the church, need to continually ask ourselves, why are we doing this, and if the answer is not “For the glory of God.” Then stop it, drop it immediately, and either pick it up with the right attitude or leave it laying on the ground. I think this is especially true around the holidays when the whole reason for celebration is God’s glory.