For the last few years, every time December rolls around, I haven’t really... felt it. You know, the Christmas spirit. That rising glee as ...

The True Meaning of the Christmas Spirit

For the last few years, every time December rolls around, I haven’t really... felt it. You know, the Christmas spirit. That rising glee as December 25th approaches, that spark of excitement every time you see an evergreen, the delight of hearing all the radio stations suddenly change their tune—literally—to speak of Santa and shepherds and all the other things that make up this holiday. I haven’t felt any of it. And it wasn’t a slow waning either: in 2013, I was an adorable small, skipping to the radio the second Thanksgiving was over to be the first to hear Feliz Navidad. 2014 rolled around and I couldn’t stand half the songs I used to love; the other half, I didn’t hate, I just wasn’t in the mood for them at the time (I did randomly crave them in July, though, so go figure).

A part of me was depressed at all this. I wanted to be excited about the holidays, the gifts, the vacation time, the music, the food (you know what, scratch that; I’m actually still excited about the food), but I just couldn’t bring myself to actually feel it the way I used to. As 2014 wrapped up and that Christmas was only a day or two away, I gave up and chalked it up to growing up; but every year, I still kind of waited. A part of me accepted it, but each year after Thanksgiving, another part of me paused, eyes squinted and fingers crossed, to feel that childlike thrill shining its way into my soul as Christmas loomed into sight.


So I sighed, went through the motions of enjoying the holiday as best as I could, got my biggest high on the actual Christmas Day (though it was quick to fall the day after), and moved on.

But this year, as I realized that yet again I wasn’t going to feel all “Christmasy,” I had a sudden realization: I might be growing up, in an unfortunate and inescapable way, but the Christmas Spirit isn’t what I’m missing.

In spite of finding less excitement in the season, I wasn’t going through the motions when it came to the holiday; I was going through the motions when it came to the traditions. The decorations, the parties, the carols, that sort of thing. In my opinion, some of it is pretty (read Pentatonix Christmas compilations and the Christmas tree), but a lot of it is... almost tedious (read basically everything else with a few exceptions I’ll think of as soon as this post goes live).

I enjoy getting gifts for my siblings, seeing their faces when they open them, and watching them play with the gifts throughout the year, but there’s not a whole lot I want for myself. There are things I’d like, of course, and I won’t argue if someone wants to give them to me, but if I don’t get them, I know I’ll make it to December 26th, lol. I don’t have the same desperate need for EVERYTHING ON MY LIST that I did when I was a kid.

Some people go all out with their decorations and it looks really good... but I have no interest in being a part of anything beyond a tree, some lights, and maybe a nativity scene. As for the parties, they’re nice and I actually don’t hate them, but I’ve realized that I go more for my extroverted friends who want to see me and less for meenjoying the party itself. Plus, I’m busy, and whether it’s a good thing or not (I’m super Type A), I don’t really want to stop for anything.

In all honesty, food is the only thing about Christmas that I get really excited about (as bad as that may sound). Because for some ridiculous reason we’ve decided to only eat this good once or twice a year. Pfft. Silly people.

Well, actually, I get excited about food and one other thing.

Many of you probably noticed that I haven’t talked about the actual reason for the season yet: the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I have not lost my excitement about Him. It doesn’t show in the obvious ways, because I don’t always show real emotions in real life; but I know that I know that my love for my Savior, the thrill over His first coming, is still very much alive in my heart. The thankfulness that He deemed you and me not worthy but still worth Him giving up all His majesty and all His glory and coming down to us in the form of a child. So that He could grow up among us, be tempted the same ways we are yet never sin, to show us His understanding and His love, deeply, truly, genuinely (Hebrews 4:14-16).

And then to die. Because He knew that we needed to be saved and He loved us enough to do it at the cost of such incredible pain (Philippians 2:5-8). That is something I have not forgotten and never intend tonot during Christmas or any other time of the year.

To be clear, I don’t write this post to toot my own horn about how steeped the world has become in pagan traditions and how we’re all focused on the wrong things and I’m so spiritual for focusing on the Lord instead. In fact, if you do feel really “Christmasy,” I think that’s wonderful! I kinda wish that I still did.

But I write this post for anyone experiencing the same thing as mea kind of jaded, out-of-touch feeling with all the traditions but maybe not with the Savior—so that you would know that, one, you aren’t alone. And two, you’re okay. You don’t have to get excited every time you hear a Christmas song or see a lawn decked out with elves and reindeer. You can even groan inwardly the next time someone invites you to an ugly sweater party. So long as you keep the true spirit of Christmas, the Holy Spirit, first in your heart all year long, you are 100% okay. You have a hope deep down in your soul that will never alter, no matter how you feel (Hebrews 6:19), and because of this, you’re good. Truly good. And not just in my eyes, but in the eyes of our Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ, the Lord of Heaven and Savior of Humanity.

Remember, dears, that you are amazing, cherished, and loved. Hope you all have a fantastic Christmas, whether you’re into every piece of the holiday or not.

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  1. Recently, I've been so busy with school (dangit, school), that I haven't really been spending as much time with God, or even thinking about God at all. And I wish I had. This year I am actually feeling Christmassy-maybe because I'm having christmas in my house with just my immediate family rather than a holiday house with no decorations and a lot of cousins. And since I have a break from school, I have had more time with God but... it's a process still. I don't know. But I do hate how sometimes the whole reason for christmas-the son of god loved humanity so much he became human-gets lost in the 'presents-food(although the food is great, of course)-tree-santa-reindeer' silliness. Fun, but silly. Thank you for this :)

    1. That's understandable. And I mean, it happens to everyone. It's great that you're recognizing it though, and actively taking those steps to get back into a real relationship with Him. Proud of you, and if you want to talk more about it, feel free to contact me. :)

      Yes, food is good, lol. And No problem. :D

  2. I am starting loath a lot of the Christmas Commercialization. So I know exactly what you mean. I do get a fuzzy feeling when I remember what we are really celebrating.

    1. Haha, yeah, I can understand that. :p And that's great! As long as you're focus is on Him, there's nothing wrong with disliking some of the commercialization. :)

  3. Getting back to the spirit of Christmas is what helped me recapture that feeling I missed. I stopped thinking about what to buy for others and started to focus on what I wanted to do with them. A few years ago our family agreed not to exchange presents among the adults. We had something under the tree for the children, but donated money to local charities as a family. One year we sent enough money to one of our favorite organizations to plant thirty trees in a reforestation project. Another year we bought a wheelchair for a paraplegic. We don't have any trouble finding that holiday spirit anymore.

    May you find and keep yours, Alexa! I'm excited about returning to your site in 2017 to see what great things you're up to.

    1. Oh, wow, that is awesome!!! Great way to celebrate Christmas. :D

      Thank you so much!!!

  4. I find Christmas waaaay too stressful.😂 I used to try and pretend I didn't and just get over it, BUT NOPE. IT IS STRESSFUL. So the only part I really like is the food too!! (The food is just about everything omg, especially the leftovers.) And of course it's good to remember the real reason for the season, even though I kind of struggle with that because the Nativity didn't happen in December anyway.😂🙈🙊 And I know that's not the point of choosing to celebrate Jesus in December so YAY that for remembering God this season too!

    1. Yeah, it definitely can be. Very stressful :p
      YES. Food is good. Especially Christmas food <3

      Haha, yeah, that is true. But I think it's still good that we have a time set apart to celebrate it, even if it's not the ideal, technical time of when it happened. Plus it gives us the opportunity to talk about Him more openly. :)


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