December 22, 2015

Three days to go!  On the 25th, my three children will wake and go see what “Santa” brought.  Not too early though.  Living in Alaska, my wife and I don’t worry about before-sunrise awakenings; the sun rises well after 10 a.m. 

Now that all three of my children are in the double digits, the whole of the Goodman Five knows that, in truth, Vonda Kay and I (mostly the former) purchased the jolly elf’s gifts and ate his cookies (mostly me).  Nevertheless the pretending continues for all of us.  It’s fun to play along with the tradition of Santa, his elves, and reindeer.

Christmas Day is not an Ordinary day in comparison to the other 364 for most people.  People talk of a red-nosed creature and flying sleighs, children rise earlier, families hang around the house in pajamas for extended periods of time, feasts replace rushed meals, and requests to say “Cheese” increase.

Often, another unOrdinary aspect of Christmas Day is seen in the way we relate to one another.  Grudges are dropped for a bit.  “Please pass” replaces “give me.”  Hugs, and even kisses, increase.  Giving feels better (at least as good) as receiving. 

As I confessed last week, I am a huge fan of the Ordinary things of life.  With that coupled with our Christmas observations, I urge you to join me in an adjustment. 

Let’s make Christmas Ordinary! 

That is to say, let’s treat (don’t wait for New Year’s resolutions) our family members, friends, and yes, even enemies, as we do on the day of the celebration of the birth of Christ Jesus.

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.  Romans 12:1-2 (The Message)

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