Look What You Made Me Do- the Holidays for Those Who Can’t Even

I get weak in the knees for Santa. Not because I love him- because he scares the crap out of me. It’s hard to explain to my fanatical Holiday-loving friends who start decorating in October, that the sight of the first Christmas decorations in the malls makes my stomach drop. While everyone else seems to be getting into the rapturous holiday magic, I feel the nervous helplessness that comes with unmet expections for a perfect holiday - the kind that looks like it sprang from the pages of a magazine, coupled with budget concerns, an already slammed schedule, and the impossible task of shopping for all the men and boys in my house that don’t fit any generic on-line gift-giving guides. Why are only expensive electronics  on these lists? Where are the books that boys would actually want to read? How come I can’t buy clothes for teenage boys? Nevermind, I know the answer to that one.

I have an almost pathological need to create the most thoughtful, handmade, gifts- that exceed last year’s in scope and requisite skills/talents required to produce- and mail them early enough to not spend a fortune. Why do I do it? I will blame my mom, as all grown women do at the holidays. When the going gets rough, all we need is a bottle of wine, a sympathetic friend, and the truth about mom (and let’s not forget Grandma) comes puring out. It doesn’t matter what your mom was like - it’s all her fault, and don’t you forget it.  Mine baked goodies, decorated with heirloom decorations, wrapped presents like a professional (no really, people paid her to wrap their presents), and sewed matching Christmas gowns for all the little girls in the family.  The horror. Where did she get off setting me up for failure like that? She also sang like an angel and made cocoa from scratch on the stove - no mix in the microwave for her.

But she also struggled with the crushing weight of perfectionism. And now, between glasses of wine and the occasional tears, I blame my mom for placing an impossible mantle on me to measure up. So, for a while I threw in the towel on holidays, and made a show of not caring so much I ordered everyone the same gift on Amazon, and shipped them unwrapped. I’m not even sure we had a tree. You can’t make me care! Look what you made me do! It was a silly rebellion, and filled with the empty sadness of actually letting everyone down, instead of just supposing I did. Such is the burden of perfectionism - your best is never good enough, and no amount of striving is going to elicit genuine love from your audience. And if you get right down to it, perfectionism is really just pride, masquerading as a virtue. To combat perfectionism, you need acknowledge the truth of it’s origin...weakness.

In 2 Cor. 12:9-10, it says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. Only by confessing weakness can Christ become your strength. In fact, admitting weakness is the key that unlocks healing and release from the addiction that is perfectionism. Or gossip. Or judgement. Or whatever holiday-inspired indulgence you partake in to make yourself feel superior to those you compare yourself to. This holiday season, I will declare my weakness so that His power is made perfect. Soon enough, our actions will align with Christ’s overcoming power that transforms our weak moments into areas of victory, and that makes for a holiday worth truly celebrating.

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Heather Bise

Silver & Gold Holiday Beauty Bash benefiting Gather Her

FREE

'Tis the season for all things that sparkle! Grab your girl tribe, fancy up, and gather 'round at Cotone for a fun evening of beauty and fashion benefiting Gather Her &  Created Woman, a non-profit that empowers women to be who they are created to be.

 

Sip, shop and get pampered all in one place! 

*Free Mini Makeovers using Jentri Quinn Makeup + Skin

*Complimentary Braid Bar

*Raffle Prizes (get one free ticket when you RSVP now!)

*Light Bites & Cocktails / Wine

*Holiday Music provided by DJ Anupi

*Candy Bar

*Complimentary Chair massages by Teresa with Roots and Remedy

*Receive a special discount on regularly priced clothing and makeup when you RSVP now and mention this invite! Excludes consignment.