Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Christmas Spirit—Just Another Ghost Story?

Is the Christmas Spirit just another Ghost Story?
Don’t you yourselves know that you are God’s sanctuary and that the Spirit of God lives in you? I Corinthians 3:16

How is your Christmas season shaping up? For so many of us, December is a month of insane commitments and looming expectations. It’s not just the presents or the gatherings—although those alone can be overwhelming. The real Christmas killer, in my opinion, is that elusive Christmas Spirit we’re all supposed to be filled with—like some kind of holiday ectoplasm.

If you ask me, that’s one scary ghost.

Don't make Christmas just a mark on the
spiritual scale—an incalculable measure
of holiness.
It’s frightening because it’s imaginary, not to mention completely unattainable. And in case you didn’t know, there is nothing in God’s word that propels us toward this elusive pinnacle of holiday perfection—not a single verse. The only spirit we’re to be filled with is the Holy Spirit and He’s with us year round.

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things we need to strive toward when it comes to holiness. But the idea that we have to be super-Christians during the holidays is a lie of mythic proportions.

I’m not against celebrating Christmas, far from it. It’s the time when we commemorate the birth of our Savior. But we’ve turned this season into an incalculable measure of holiness—a mark on the spiritual scale that we’re all attempting to reach.

The true joy of Christmas
begins and ends with God.
This doesn’t do anything except add pressure to an already impossible situation.

So what’s a person to do?

Realize that the true joy of Christmas begins and ends with God. Sure it’s great to be with family and friends, but people will always disappoint us. Instead, when our focus remains on God, we’re protected from the friction that can arise during the holidays.

Join me, as I make a conscious decision to keep the true joy of Christmas this season.



  1. Love this, Edie. I posted my comment to Facebook. :)

  2. I share this struggle, Edie. As I write this I have a cone of shame resting on my lap. It contains my dog, who was attacked by 3 German Shepherds Thursday night while I was walking him. Needles to say, it's been a lousy weekend. But as I drove home from yet another trip to the vet last night (he pulled out one of his drain tubes), I realized how blessed I am. My wife doesn't have cancer. I'm not unemployed. My kids are healthy and love The Lord. That, to me, is the Spirit of Christmas. Looking past the minor inconveniences and thankful for all that we do have.

  3. Just left our church's Singing Christmas Tree that reminded me what the reason for it season is.