MTL Christmas - Page 48

my parents were using.) As I looked at the picture, I just loved all the colors and the freedom of that hummingbird…until I saw IT. Instead of buying new lights for the tree, we’re sending some extra money to our Compassion children in Nicaragua so that they can experience their own joyful Christmas. My hand instinctively reached out and touched a piece of the stained glass in the lower left-hand corner. Even at my amateur status, I knew that this one piece had been placed in the stained glass backward. My heart sank. What should I do? Should I tell her that her picture was ruined? Or should I just wait for someone else to point it out. Instead of fussing over a feast on Christmas Eve, we’ve decided to order pizza after church and play some board games. Instead of making our kids run to everyone’s house on Christmas, we’ll be celebrating on December 27 and truly enjoying our time together, as a family. When she saw the piece my hand went to, she looked at me with a knowing smile. “Don’t worry. I know that piece is in there backwards. I did it that way on purpose.” And even though the picture isn’t perfect, it will still be beautiful. I must have looked very confused, because she went on in her explanation. “I start each project knowing it’s not going to be perfect. I put that first piece in backwards so I can get over it needing to be done ‘just right’. It makes it more fun for me to create something beautiful when I don’t have to worry about it being perfect!” Five years ago, I couldn’t embrace my backwards piece—the yellow ice scraper. But now? I’ve realized that Christmas done imperfectly is so much more of a gift not only for myself but for those I love. Christmas done imperfectly is so muc� more of a gift So the next year, instead of making the requisite giant feast for our whole family, including the traditional turkey with all the trimmings, we served pizza fondue. Related Products: God is in the Small Stuff Family Advent Devotional Bruce Bickel & Stan Jantz, $9.99 And the year after, instead of celebrating on December 25 and watching our kids hurry off to their other parents, future in-laws and other obligations, we celebrated on December 21 and enjoyed a relaxed, connected, almost Christmas. These may seem like such silly, small “backwards pieces,” but they have had a profound effect on my feelings toward the holiday. I’m someone who can easily get wrapped up in the idea of making things “just right.” And when my head, and my heart, is in that space, it doesn’t leave a lot of room to receive all the gifts that God has for me at this time of year. Our Family Christmas Karin Dahl Silver, $14.99 The gift of peace, that tells me I need to stop trying to measure up, because God sent His Son to do that. The gift of joy, that tells me that I don’t need to manufacture reasons to celebrate, because God sent His Son to earth so that the world would know joy in a way that had never been experienced before. I want to experience every good gift that God is giving me. So this year, I’m starting with my backwards pieces. 48 MTL Magazine / www.mtlmagazine.com Hurry Less Worry Less at Christmas Judy Christie, $14.99