Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas Card Choices

I'm enjoying the trips to the mailbox this month. Everyday I hope for a card or two or seven.  I love receiving Christmas cards. To help curb my hypocritical nature I send them out. This year I mailed 200. It's excessive and ridiculous I know. Especially with Facebook, this blog, email, etc., people know what we look like, they can find out any ole day what I'm up to. Christmas cards are simply an indulgence.

Indulgence seems to be my Christmas theme. It's pretty pathetic. I've eaten more cookies, fudge, ice cream, and pie in the last 6 weeks than I have in the last 18 months. The seams on my skinny jeans are straining. I can hear my fat cells cheering, "M.E.R.R.Y. Christmas!" I could be really discouraged by my lack of restraint, but the last year has taught me that I can say no. I can choose any day to make healthy choices. Apparently right now I'm choosing sweets over sweat, sugar over sensibility, carbs over cardio. And it the grand scheme of things...I say,"big stinkin' deal." Life is a series of choices. Despite the cravings, the addictions, the habits, and the preferences we do have (for the most part) the ability to choose. When I'm ready to choose health-I will do it.

I want to address the flip side though. There are some things we can not choose. I'm acutely aware that this Christmas isn't easy for some of the people I love most in my life. While I'm here in a sugar haze, many people I love are dealing with devestating circumstances beyond their control.

I have dear friends who will receive my Christmas card full of family photos and happy highlights and they just might want to tear it up or throw it in the garbage. This Christmas they are dealing with divorce, serious addictions, or loneliness due to the death of a loved one. At some level I'm dealing with all of those things too. When you love others - you let the pain come in. And I can tell that I'm using indulgence as a temporary respite from reality.

Cookie comfort. I want more than that. I want to taste, touch, see and feel true hope. I crave the Scripture I chose for the back of our Christmas card:

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

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