Friday, December 9, 2016

Our Wonder-Filled Plans for Christmas

Our Wonder-Filled Plans for Christmas

It happens every year. And I know that I’m not the only one who does it.  On November 1st Thanksgiving plans are well underway. We don’t want to miss a beat in having Thanksgiving dinner as perfect as can be. I love Thanksgiving− taking time to be grateful to God for His many blessings, family gathering together, turkey dinner with the trimmings, college football on TV, and on and on. 
BUT, you know and I know that there’s a buzzing bee humming wildly inside our heads, planning and anticipating, thinking and budgeting, for the best Christmas ever. After all, it’s just around the corner! 

Our minds are bursting with wonder-filled plans:  Things like family gatherings where we all get along; we’re all on the same page; and no one−not even one− acts unseemly. And most importantly, we all focus on Jesus and the wonder of His coming. We gaze at the nativity figurines and imagine what it would be like to be in that scene ourselves. We picture ourselves kneeling beside the Christ Child, worshiping alongside the shepherds and wise men−maybe even holding a little lamb on our laps. We see our children and grandchildren joining us there−in the wonder of it all. 
When God looks into our brains, it must look something like Pinterest or the merger of Southern Living Christmas and Focus on the Family
Our minds are bursting with wonder-filled plans:  Our culinary creations will top all we’ve ever done in Christmas past. It will seem as though we’ve cloned Martha Stewart’s creativity and yes, her pocketbook−and even her staff.  [How much of that do you really think she does herself anyway?]  
Our homes will be filled with aromas of homemade Snicker Doodles, apple & pumpkin pies, fresh baked cinnamon buns, mulled cider & fresh brewed coffee.  Our table and counter tops will be heavy laden with trays of bright colored, perfectly decorated Christmas cookies, mini loaves, cakes, and bundled candies−all freshly made by our skilled and loving hands.  

Our minds are bursting with wonder-filled plans:  Our homes will be brilliantly decorated with holiday lights and homemade décor that even Martha would envy.  All the lights, yes every single one, will actually work and burn brightly in just the right spot, casting just the right shadows, in just the right places.  It will all be just right. The fragrant fresh greenery, colorfully styled with perfectly harmonized ribbons and bows, intermixes the air with the cinnamons and spice. Umm, we smile, close our eyes, deeply inhale and hold for a moment just to soak it all in.  

Our minds are bursting with wonder-filled plans:  The family will all be together at the community parade and tree lighting ceremony, after which we’ll enjoy hot chocolate while we chat and laugh together. Off to church we’ll go on Christmas Sunday* and joyfully sing all our favorite Christmas carols. 
Each heart will be thrilled again by the Christmas play. We’ll worship the new born King and joyfully say, “Merry Christmas,” to each of our church friends. [*Christmas Sunday is defined as the Sunday just before Christmas day. I had to explain that term to some of my grandchildren.] 

Our minds are bursting with wonder-filled plans: We’ll give and receive delightfully simple and meaningful gifts this year. We won’t spend more than we can afford. And best of all, everyone will appreciate−really appreciate−the gifts we give. As they carefully open each one, their eyes will sparkle with anticipation. 

Then they’ll look into our faces and gleefully say, “Oh thank you so much!  I just love it! It is just right!”  Then we’ll receive that big hug of gratitude and smile as we sweetly say, “You’re welcome, Honey.  I love you so much.” 

So- our wonder-filled plans are brilliant, indeed. Our imaginings can flit and float to impeccable holiday thrills. But—really now, let’s do be real. When our families consist of human beings, we’ll deal with human frailties. We, ourselves, are not the picture of perfection, you know.
Let’s begin our plans with a prayer to the One we celebrate and ask for His leading as we set our sights on Christmas. After all—it’s His birthday. 
AND let’s do what Proverbs 16:3 wisely tells us: Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.

Please leave a comment and share ways you manage to maintain focus and composure during your Christmas planning and follow-through.   

Merry Christmas!  

"Our Wonder-Filled Plans for Christmas" has been published in the December 2015 issue of the free on-line magazine, "Refresh." To read more delightful and inspirational Christmas related articles please see the December issue -> .

©Connie Wohlford 2016


  1. I was getting really stressed this month, but God helped and I think friends prayed! Remembering what matters most helps me to stay focused on the important things and not fuss about what doesn't get done. I think that building relationships is the most important part of a holiday season and celebrating the One who started the reason for the holiday. God sent us His Son! What a blessing to celebrate at this time of year. Merry Christmas, Connie!

    1. Amen, Katy---Indeed! Glad to know you're working through to that conclusion with a few days left before Christmas Day.

  2. Great post, Connie! Each year, I decorate less and less. I've learned that every corner of my house doesn't have to be decorated. Simple is good! I've been convicted that this holiday, which should be about celebrating the coming of our Savior, has quickly turned into a stressful season - decorations, parties, gift-buying, and all the activities that go with Christmas. This article is a great reminder to keep Christ as the center of Christmas and not get so distracted by the things that can stress us out. Thank you!

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Crickett. I do less and less each year myself. Thanks for the comment.