Sunday, December 12, 2010

Creating Peace during the Twelve Days of Christmas

I love finding ways to make the twelve days of Christmas meaningful and peace-filled. Here are a few suggestions that can be adapted to your circumstances and completed in any way that feels comfortable to you. This year I can already completed most of these suggestions, and it has truly been a peace-filled season. As we focus of giving love instead of getting stuff, Christmas becomes a matter of the heart, an attitude that can permeate our lives each day of the year.

First day: Send an anonymous thank you note to someone in your family, at work, or in your neighborhood.

Second day: Leave a treat on the door on a widow or widower in your neighborhood.

Third day: Donate a toy to a needy child.

Fourth day: Donate some food to a Food Bank.

Fifth day: Share some gently used clothing with the homeless, the poor, or those who are abused.

Sixth day: Write a list of reasons you appreciate your spouse, brother, sister, mother, or father. Include the list in a Christmas card and send or give it to the person.

Seventh day: Reflect on the gifts and blessings that God has given you this year. Thank Him for each one of them.

Eighth day: Invite someone who is lonely to dinner, lunch, hot chocolate, for dessert, or to a free Christmas concert.

Ninth day: Read Luke 2 and reflect on God’s infinite love for you and for all of His children. Think of one way you can share His love with others and then do it.

Tenth day: Take a healthy treat to an elderly or shut-in person. Spend some time visiting with him or her.

Eleventh day: Do something kind for yourself. Take a warm bath or read something inspiration. Reflect upon the unique talents and gifts that God has given you.

Twelfth day: Today give yourself and others a priceless gift that bestows happiness, joy, and serenity to the giver: forgiveness. If you find it too difficult to forgive someone who has offended you, ask God to help you. He will. If you need time to forgive, allow yourself to process your emotions, but after you have done so, choose forgiveness, which frees you from the burden of bitterness.

May you discover that as we radiate Christlike love to ourselves and others during the holiday season, we experience the true spirit of Christmas, which is pure love.

© Carol Brown

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