I hope you’re coping well with the rush of Christmas in full swing! Like we talked about on Sunday, it’s often difficult to find moments of peace and joy in the midst of all the crazy. Perhaps watching this video from Sunday will help recapture that – at least a little!

This past week, a local pastor asked me what I was praying for our church this Christmas – if I had one thing that I wanted folks to experience (or thadt I wanted to experience) this year, what would it be?

That’s a great question, isn’t it? Stop for a minute and ask yourself: if there was one mark that you hoped this Christmas would leave on you or your family, what would it be?

I’ve thought about this a lot, especially in light of this Advent Conspiracy that we’ve entered into as a church. After preaching last week on “spending less,” Jen and I were processing how things felt this Christmas. We’ve not drastically shifted what we do at Christmas…but we have tried to intentionally tone it down. We’ve intentionally put into practice the stuff we’re talking about on Sunday. Really. The hard part of preaching is that your sermons can and will be used against you. But as we talked about this year, there was a sense of freedom and a lightness about it.

Because we’ve spent less, it’s like a weight has been lifted.

We’re not perfect by any means, but it’s amazing how this has transformed the way we experience Christmas. I used to feel the dollar signs add up. I used to worry that our kids would fall into the trap of wanting more and more. I used to be overwhelmed at all that needed to be done and bought before December 24. Not anymore. :o)

So as I’ve thought about my friend’s question, two things come to mind. First, my hope and prayer is that we experience moments of genuinely being captured by Jesus. That we’d be interrupted by the mystery and the beauty of God coming to be with us. Second, I’m praying that we’d all experience a freedom and a lightness that comes as we conspiring against the religio of over-spending and over-doing.

So what about you? What are you praying for your family to experience this Christmas?