Don’t you just love to look at all the lights at Christmas! The sparkles the decorations the beauty of it all. I do! Then why is my gut churning….
My mom was a concert pianist when I was a little girl. Oh how I loved to listen to her play the piano. It was so beautiful! I wanted so bad to learn how to play like she did. I didn’t get that opportunity, and as I grew up, that beautiful piano music faded into the background and she stopped playing.. for many reasons. But my love for piano has always stayed.
I love the piano so much that 10 years ago I decided that I would take piano lessons. I wanted to play that beautiful music like my Mom did and so many others that I listen to. From the first lesson to the last lesson I took…I hated it. I found no joy in playing the piano. I was very discouraged with myself and even got angry at the piano. I quit. It bothered me to quit, because I knew that in order to be good at anything you have to practice..that’s what I tell my kids.
The thing is that I found absolutely no joy in learning to play. I was miserable..so why in the world was I doing it..because I loved piano music! So I decided that I would leave the actual playing to those that had a gift and love for playing the piano and I would relax and enjoy the piano with my ears and my heartI didn’t have to feel guilty or resentful that God did not make me with the gift of playing the piano. I relax and enjoy listening, I build others up with this gift whenever I can and I have so much peace…
Back to Christmas..
Slowly I drove down our street and into our cul de sac the lights were beautiful..house after house lit up and sparkling. Oh there were houses here and there with no lights….but you could see there pretty Christmas trees in the window. My gut was churning and I was feeling so restless. Pulling into my driveway I could see the pretty deer given to us from our neighbors. Our tree all lit up in the window. Still my gut was churning. As I walked into the front door boxes lined the long hallway..full of Christmas decorations. Most of them inherited, some given by neighbors…as they wanted to change their themes..
Change themes? I’m going to be honest..my stomach is churning because I hate putting up Christmas decorations! Ok, I’ve said it! I’ve said what I have felt for a long time. I’ve held it inside long enough! I’ve not wanted to say it because it seems so unspiritual, un festive, scrooge-like. But it’s true.
I really prayed about this. I examined my and this is what I found my motives for decorating to be:
- Everyone else is doing it
- What will others think if I don’t decorate
- The kids will be totally warped if I don’t decorate the whole house
- My feelings don’t matter as long as everyone else is happy
- It will glorify the Lord if my house is all lit up so others can see we are really celebrating
- Our neighbors have given us a couple boxes of decorations and so we are expected to put them out
- My energy level doesn’t matter as long as others are happy
- I can sacrifice other necessary things in order to decorate
How many of these things have to do with the true meaning of Christmas? It’s silly of me I know. It’s obvious that most of these reasons for decorating are people pleasing and martyrdom.
So today I’m going to take out just a couple more decorations and pack up the boxes and give them away. I’ve decided that, like the piano, decorating is not my gift. I will celebrate and appreciate this gift in others as I drive down the streets and visit others homes during this joyous season.
I refuse to feel guilty because I know that God has made me with other gifts and talents..I love to cook, garden, sew, blog LOL. I will bring the neighbors homemade soup and homemade bread in the winter. I will share my flowers from my garden in the summer. I will make homemade heating pads with my sewing.
I’m not so bad after all
How about you? Do you have a gift or talent that you share with others? Do you fall into the trap of people pleasing sometimes?