Are you dreading Advent and Christmas this year?

Are you a mother with young children? Are you depressed? Having marriage issues? Are you deep in grief? Are you overwhelmed? Are you just struggling to find joy?

Advent can be a really hard time.

This is the season when Pinterest is really in it’s element. Almost every single link on my page has suggestions {sometimes requirements?} on how I can make this Christmas the craftiest, the tastiest, the most joyful, the thriftiest, the grandest, the least stressful, the most Christ-like…

And I wanted to encourage you {because I’m encouraging me}Β that you don’t have to be Super Christmas Mum. You don’t have to do the calendars and reading plans. You don’t have to craft every day with unwilling children. You don’t have to bake all the Christmas things. You don’t have sew your own stockings. You don’t have to craft together a wreath for the front door made out of past Christmas cards.

If you want to do these things, then do them merrily and with cheer! But if you don’t want to or can’t,Β be free not to.

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Just like so many areas in life, social media and the internet has just made life harder for us. With the beautiful photos and happy moments captured then shared, our natural inclinations to be discontent, jealous, and to compare with judgement {on others and ourselves} are aroused more easily and more frequently.

This is one of the reasons I went off Facebook almost two years ago. I knew what it was doing in me. I would get envious. I would get proud and want to show off {under the guise of “sharing”}. And I was becoming the mother I didn’t want to be: glued to a screen and missing out on real life with my family.

{Because who is anyone kidding – the internet is not real life. It is a medium, sure, of sharing life and learning and connecting. But it is not real, in front of my eyes, moving, breathing, soul-living life. And I want that more than I want fresh feeds or the latest gossip.}

The internet can be a friend or a foe. And during the festive season, I find the internet can be more of a foe.

So, sweet friend who feels like a failure for not creating an Advent calendar from scratch that comes with scriptures and hand-drawn decorations to add to the tree…

So, sweet friend who feels like making a big feast worthy of going viral would swamp her under to a place she thinks she couldn’t surface from…

So, sweet friend who is dealing with pain and confusion and a sense that life will never be the same, yet knows her kids want and perhaps need this Christmas to be more special than ever, but she just doesn’t has it in her…

So, sweet friend who feels pressured by family to be a big part of the celebrations but who hasn’t had a full night’s sleep for a long time…

Just rest. Please.

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All these expectations and pressures were not present on the day Jesus was born. He wasn’t born into this world to add burdens to you. He took your burdens on his own shoulders and died with them on a tree.Β 

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. :: Galations 5:1 ::

He wants you to celebrate His birthday, but He doesn’t want you to idolise the experience of it.Β Just as He came into the world simply and humbly, so you can celebrate and worship Him with the same manner of heart.

::If you want a very encouraging devotional that will meet you right where you are this Advent, please head to Sarah Geringer’s site where you can purchase her new devotional, Christmas Peace for Busy Moms, and follow along with all her posts in the lead up to Christmas. ::

If you’re taking Advent easy this year but still plan to do a few easy things to make it special for the family, please share below.

11 Replies to “To the Mother Dreading Advent {Rest in the Cross this Christmas}.”

  1. I love you so much for posting about this!! I have been feeling like a “bad” mom for not getting in gear and doing all these Advent projects and using Advent planning sheets, and this and that, etc….I felt like if those women were making such a big deal out of it, it must be right. But no. It just made me feel frantic and inadequate. It’s hard enough coming up with lesson plans for my special needs kindergartner, raising a toddler….remembering to shower and pay bills…. I don’t need that kind of pressure on top of it all!! lol

    Thank you for speaking truth and for assuring us it is okay to just REST! πŸ™‚ All that jazz really can seem like a form of slavery if we let it.

    In Christ, xoxo

    1. Yes! Being a wife and mother and housekeeper and Christian sister and servant at church – it’s so much! And making the time to be with the Lord and having a rich relationship with Him so that what we have with Him flows out onto our family – that is much more vital. Doing Advent things are great and there is joy in doing them if it doesn’t wreck us {and our kids} in the process. So glad we can encourage each other!

      1. Amen! I forgot to mention all those things, too! Here’s what I *am* doing for Advent that I did not mention before: we have a book I found on Amazon called, “Advent Storybook” and I am going to read one story each day. My kids love to be read to and I think it will be a special time for us together.

        Your blog does encourage me so much, thank you!!
        Sarah H. recently posted…Just a Little Ominous…My Profile

  2. Really nice post Sarah πŸ™‚ I have not been dreading Advent (I am a big kid to be honest!) but it is good to be reminded of what the focus of this season *should* be. Our baby is 11 weeks now, so I’m getting a wee bit more sleep, but our Advent activities this year are things that we already have/ do not require preparation from me. Hope you and your family have a blessed Christmas, x.
    Gwen recently posted…Book Review of Teaching From Rest by Sarah MacKenzieMy Profile

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