However, conflict often finds me. And right now, I'm in the middle of one. Probably not a huge one, but a conflict nonetheless. And it isn't with another person. It's with me.You see, I'm a Christmas card sender. I love to do it, and I love getting them (email me if you want my snail mail address LOL). This year, I have a list of just over 50 people I'm sending to. My husband and I picked out the perfect photo of the kids (can you look at those faces and disagree?), had them put on one of those lovely photo Christmas cards, and added our own "Christ-filled" greeting. We then ordered them, and they sit in my house as we speak waiting to be addressed, signed, stamped, and stuck in the mail.
But it's not easy. My problem, my conflict, is the cards for my side of the family. You see, I was raised Jewish, and my parents, and two of my four brothers, do not celebrate Christmas. It's not that they don't know "the reason for the season." They reject that reason. To them, Jesus was a blasphemer and a false messiah. My father occasionally uses my Lord's name as a curse word.
Now, I have absolutely no problem sending "Christ in Christmas" cards to my non-saved friends--those who may be atheists, agnostics, or secular Christians. But somehow, sending my Jewish parents a Christmas card seems wrong.
It feels like conflict. And I don't like conflict--especially with family. Remember?So, what should I do? Do I buy a handful of Hanukkah cards? Do I find some generic "Happy Holidays" cards to send them, and perhaps a few of my "unreligious" friends? Or do I suck up and send them our Christmas cards, which wishes them "blessings as we celebrate the Word becoming flesh?"
Not an easy decision, of that I am certain.I have gone through this each year since we got saved, but this is the first year we have put something so blatantly "Christian" directly on our family card. In the past, we've just gotten prints of a family picture and stuck them in cards we bought - and we always had a few generic holiday (or occasionally Hanukkah) cards for those members of my family. This year, the picture is printed directly on the card.
So, what am I doing this year? I haven't exactly decided. Actually, I do know what I'm doing. It's just that I'm not sure if I've purposely avoided a conflict, done "the wise thing," or something else.
You remember how I said I had fifty plus cards to send out? Well, we only ordered forty Christmas cards. So, yesterday I ordered twenty more, with the same picture but a different sentiment: "Merry Christmas from the Shers." (In all honesty, I couldn't have fit my original sentiment on this particular card anyhow) It still may rub my family somewhat wrong, but that's what they're getting. They can always snip the card part off and just hang up the picture.
Like I said, I'm still not sure what I did when I made this particular choice, But, it's done--at least until next year. What would you think if you got, say, a Hanukkah card? or a Ramadan card? What would you have done?
What should I do next year?Heavenly Father, help me to discern the difference between avoiding conflict to my and/or Your detriment and being understanding and respectful of others' beliefs, especially at this time of year. I want to spread the true message of Christmas to many, especially those who don't accept Christ. Give me guidance in how to reach out the the lost this holiday season in ways that will be effective for Your Kingdom, no matter how much conflict I may need to engage in. In the precious Name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.
Oh, and don't forget my Holiday Expo Giveaway (closes Thursday at midnight), if you haven't entered.
I'm also having a 100th post celebration/contest and giveaway. For that one, you've got a week! Click on the button for more information.