Many people (who are old enough) remember the Christmases from our childhoods with nostalgia or even longing. This is because Christmas has really deteriorated, especially as far as the true spirituality of the season would want. It may not be necessary to live a monastic life to get back some of that Christmas spirit and spirituality so many people are searching for, but there are ways for you to put more of a focus on religion this holiday.
Observe The Calendar.
In many different denominations of Christianity, there is no real calendar observed. This is a bit of a shame. For those of you who aren’t up on your liturgy like the Cenacle Sisters are, Advent is the four Sundays before Christmas, and it’s a preparatory season. Traditionally, the Christmas season doesn’t start until the 24th and goes through January 6th (the 12 days of Christmas).
Be (and get) prepared
This means that people used to prepare for the actual Christmas season for four whole weeks for the big celebrations that followed. This is an element sorely lacking in modern society, which has unfortunately fallen into consumerism and the traps of instant gratification. If you commit to celebrating Advent as all Christians used to, it will be an incredibly emotional, mental, and spiritual “reset” for you.
Sync your Scriptures
Corollary to this, it’s a great idea to read the Christmas story in the Bible day by day. Divide it up according to the season, so you get to the part where Jesus is born right on the 24th. The best way to do this is to read and closely study a little bit every day. Do this with your whole family.
Make a nativity scene
This is another great family project. You can make it mini, or if you have the space and time, life-size. You can make it depict the journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem bit by bit, slowly updating it in line with the Scriptures you are constantly reading and studying. In line with the other advice, don’t add Baby Jesus until the 24th at night.
Invest in food and family, not gifts!
Christmas is, after all, a celebration! And what’s a celebration without lots of great food? The gifts were never a big part of Christmas, certainly not like they have become in recent decades. Turn the clock back on this particular issue because not all change is progress. Your kids will remember the food and the laughter much more than they will remember even the nicest gift.
Choose the music for the season
Put music on that syncs up with your bible studies and your ongoing Nativity project. Make it a progression, just like everything else is. Avoid the typical secular Christmas songs that don’t really mean anything. It’s not like it can be avoided in public, but in the family vehicle and at home at least, focus on music that reinforces everything else going on.
You will find that, if you take these steps, which are honestly very simple little sacrifices, they will pay off many times over for you and for your family. Experiencing a Christmas like people did “back in the day” isn’t impossible, despite it often seeming so. Those few adjustments allow you to bring back a bit of spirituality to your Christmas, so why try them out?