It’s a Wonderful Life

The Holiday Season is upon us. The word “holiday” comes from two words: holy days. Wow. Do we still view these as holy days? If the television commercials are any indication, there is nothing holy about these few weeks from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day.

What’s the whole point of the Holiday Season, as we call it? Jesus, Thanksgiving, family gatherings, traditions, roasted turkey with cornbread dressing and cranberry sauce, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie, the crackling of the fireplace flame, Joy to the World!

All those are great and I love them as much as the next guy (gal). I can’t decide if it’s the quiet, cozy moments or the rowdy, boisterous ones that bring the sweetest memories. Maybe both!

My dear friend, Sheila, gave me “The Best Yes” by Lysa TerKeurst last year. It introduced me to a different angle to the whole “I said, “Yes” one too many times” dilemma. I figured if I said, “No”, then someone else would have to do it and I’m pretty good at most things plus I can get by on little sleep, so why not just say, “Yes”?

Good grief! Do you ever have that kind of crazy thinking?

Recently, my new friend, Kris, and I put together an event at her art studio, The Mud Room. Our guests were served supper and cookies; they could paint a canvas with either a Thanksgiving or Christmas theme and both Kris and I delivered messages of hope and joy for the holiday season. As we planned it, she asked if I could create the flier for the event. I agreed immediately. As she described the vision she had for the flier, it immediately became obvious that she was the Best Yes, not me. I could have done it, but it was not my Best Yes.

I hope that makes sense. If it doesn’t, go get the book!

As we seek our Best Yes opportunities, we need to set boundaries and remember to make memories. Every day is a blessing and an opportunity to show our spirit of thankfulness and joy.

When we look at how God gives, we see that He gives generously, quickly and cheerfully. Let’s see one example in 2 Corinthians 9:6-11
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: “They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.” Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

My daughter made a comment the other day along the lines of, “when you become rich and famous.” I told her, “I already am.” I’m rich beyond my wildest dreams. Not because my bank account is overflowing, but because my heart is. My pantry is. My table is. My closet is. I have more than I need and it has more to do with my attitude than my circumstances.

My favorite holiday movie for several reasons is “It’s a Wonderful Life.” The ending makes me cry every single time. We are loved more than we can imagine. Our lives intersect with so many others and we each make an impact on those around us, whether we realize it or not.

I pray that as you wade through the days, the crowds and the parties, that you will find rest, find joy and find love. It may be that you have to grasp it in the quiet of the morning, but I hope you’ll savor it. It really is a wonderful life!