So, I’ll just come out of the holiday closet right now and admit that I totally love Christmastime.
I am that freak who listens only to holiday music from Thanksgiving through New Years Eve, who insists on watching a cultivated list of favorite Christmas movies starting with “A Christmas Story” on Thanksgiving night, who pretty much wears some version of red and green all during December, who adores snow even when it starts on Halloween, and who was definitely a Who down in Whoville in probably more than one past life.
I get ridiculously excited about putting up my tree and decorating it, have difficulty taking it down, and I’m guessing it’s no accident that my boyfriend co-owns a Christmas tree farm.
I totally get that not everyone is like me in that regard, and even though I have Christmas spirit swirling around me like a sparklier version of Pigpen’s dust cloud, it can certainly also have the vibe of higher stress – feeling overwhelmed, pressured, pissed off; experiencing a sense of obligation, anxiety about finding the perfect gift, crowded stores, financial worry; not having enough time to shop, too much family dysfunction (and feeling inadequate in comparison to Hallmark commercials), and finding one’s self coming way closer to punching someone in the face over a parking spot at the mall than is comfortable.
If you are finding yourself relating to any of this, if you are starting to feel somewhat jacked up by THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR, my gift of 3 tools to help you bypass Crazy Town this season might be the best present you could give yourself.
So, my mom used to bake a birthday cake for Jesus every year on Christmas Eve. It was her way of reminding us that Christmas is not about the gifts, or rather – it is about what the gifts actually symbolize.
She was a student of New Thought – I grew up in a Unity church – and similarly to those of us who follow the teachings of A Course in Miracles, she viewed Jesus as a magnificent teacher and bringer of Christ Consciousness into the world. So I like to think that that is what our celebrations are really about – the gift-giving, making merry with loved ones, singing, feasting – it’s throwing an epic, month-long, gigantic birthday party for the Christ Light that is born in all of us.
So, let’s bust open the 3 gifts to help us all stay sane and make meaning of our festivus jubilation – which will result in our having a much more awesome, chill, fun season!
3 Tools to Keep You Sane This Holiday Season
The First Gift is That of Forgiveness
I know to some of you I might sound like a broken record because forgiveness is kind of my jam -although it’s actually more of a Jesus jam – I’m just following along with the program. But the way I look at it is that if there were a broken record that by my listening to it over and over would help me to:
- realize that I am the light of the world
- go badass on fear
- not experience conflict
- be in love with everyone all the time
- no longer feel pain
- and be in a constant state of joy
BRING IT. Because the flip side of this broken record is the one of the ego mind telling us all of the reasons why we need to feel stressed out, exhausted, spent, and all of the other formerly mentioned lack of cheer examples – basically saying f*ck holly jolly.
So the gift of forgiveness as taught in A Course in Miracles goes like this:
- I am forgiving this person / situation, remembering that there is nothing to forgive because
- I am dreaming an illusion made up by the ego mind
- I acknowledge that the guilt is in my mind and I am projecting it onto the person or situation
- I forgive myself for believing in the dream
- I ask Spirit to change my mind, heal my projections, and help me see this differently
A shorter version of this is
“You are Spirit, pure, whole, and innocent. All is forgiven and released.”
That is easier to memorize, put on sticky notes in your car and on your mirror, and bring to mind as soon as you can remember it when the fruitcake starts to hit the fan. The more you practice it, the faster your peace and sanity will be restored.
The Second Gift is That of Light
This gift is one that reconnects you with the Spirit of the season – literally.
Each and every time that you see strings of lights adorning a home, a candle in a window, a Christmas tree, a menorah, a fire in a hearth, a lighted wreath – allow it to be a reminder to you that it is ALL a representation of the Christ light in YOU. Let it symbolize that YOU are the light of the world, God’s holy Son.
Let all of the lights in this season of light be reflections of the truth in you, brighter than the brightest star. Your brilliance as a beloved child of God, shining your Christ-light into the joined minds of all of your brothers – that is what all of these sparkling manifestations of the light are for, if you choose to see with Christ’s vision.
The Third Gift is That of Inner Peace
It is wrapped to look just like an mp3 file that you can download and listen to every day. It is a 5-minute meditation that is recorded in my voice, and based on the process of true prayer given in the Song of Prayer supplement of A Course in Miracles.
Listen to it here or click the link blow the audio to download it to your device.
The Course tells us,
“The secret of true prayer is to forget the things you think you need.”
This meditation, therefore, is a way of surrendering all of the BS that disturbs your peace, and bringing yourself into communion with Spirit. If you listen to it on a regular basis, you will experience an amazing sense of peace.
“The real sound is always a song of Thanksgiving and of Love. You cannot, then, ask for the echo. It is the song that is the gift. Along with it come the overtones, the harmonics, the echoes, but these are secondary. In true prayer you hear only the song. All the rest is merely added. You have sought first the Kingdom of Heaven, and all else has indeed been given you.” – A Course in Miracles
I hope that this early Christmas present will bring you greater peace, love, and joy this holiday season.
I’d love to hear from you…
Question: How is using these power tools help you to stay in peace, love, and joy? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
If you would like to explore more tools for helping yourself to feel lighter, brighter, calmer, and happier this season, please consider checking out the “10-Day Stress Detox” program by clicking here.
Thank you for being the light of the world. I love you more than white chocolate peppermint bark, the movie “Love Actually”, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra Christmas tunes cranked up LOUD (because, “the best way to spread Christmas cheer is sing it loud for all to hear!” – Buddy the Elf).
Know someone that you’d like to share this gift with? Click here to share the best gift ever with your friends on Facebook.
Rev Kelly Russell
Psychotherapist, Spiritual Coach
& Teacher of A Course in Miracles