I was first introduced to Renee when someone shared her viral post: A Letter to My Boys (The Real Reason I Say No to Electronics) which was viewed 70,000 times in 7 days.
After reading that post, I knew I had found a friend in Renee! She has a wonderful book called Seeking Christmas: Finding the True Meaning Through Family Traditions. Leave a comment about your family and you’ll be entered to win a copy of Renee’s book!
Here are a few questions I asked Renee:
Q: How does a family use your book at Christmas?
A: Seeking Christmas is more than a devotion, it’s an experience. It’s giving the gift of traditions and memories to your family.
It was created with the busy family in mind. In our family, we struggled to get through 25 day devotions. It always sounded lovely, and we began with the best of intentions, but the reality of the pace of Christmas seemed to steal time away from us.
Seeking Christmas is a 7 day devotion, which I wrote in a way that provides a framework for families to create their own experience. It guides families while leaving room for them to make the traditions their own, unique to their own family.
Some families choose the 7 days leading up to Christmas, others choose any 7 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Each day includes an entry that invites you to “Remember”a treasured holiday memory, “Read” a portion of the Christmas story, “Reflect”on the meaning of the Scripture, “Rejoice”with family while rejoicing over all God has done with tradition building activities, and “Research” the legendary roots of a classic holiday tradition. The “Reflect” section includes questions categorized by age group to accommodate families with children at various stages. The “Rejoice” section includes an activity to do together as a family that ties to the devotional reading.
Part of the Seeking Christmas experience includes ornaments and a journal. An ornament accompanies each day and tells a piece of the story. On my website, families are able to download for free the template and create their own gorgeous ornaments. For families with younger children, using the ornaments in an exciting game of hide and seek prior to reading the devotion is highly recommended! Additionally, older children may enjoy a scavenger hunt using the ornament of the day. And some families will simply enjoy decorating their tree with the beautiful display of the Christmas story.
Q: Why is it important to have family traditions?
A: In a world that moves at a hectic pace, traditions ground us. Traditions provide security, stability, and a sense of belonging to something bigger than the individual. Traditions provide a way of feeling accepted and part of the group. And we all want to be accepted don’t we? But what or who are we looking to for acceptance? With our children, we want to guide them away from seeking acceptance in the eyes of the world. We want to point them to their Creator, who knew them before the world was formed.
When we are with our families, we are in the safe zone. Our guards can be let down. We are accepted and loved. And we belong to each other. Time spent together, experiences lived out, and memories created develop bonds that will deepen over time. Repeated experiences develop into traditions. As we become unified through these experiences, our trust for one another grows, and our love flourishes. When we feel loved, trusted, and accepted our confidence and esteem is built up.
A simple tradition will pay dividends for a lifetime. Your investment in your own family will impact the generations to come. Traditions can be the simplest of acts done repeatedly, a certain way to give a kiss, a special evening stroll, the way you signal goodbye. Traditions will affirm to your children that they belong to you, they are a part of you. And when they feel a part of you, you can point them home, to the One they truly belong to. If we intentionally invest in creating these memorable experiences with our families, then when they fly the nest, we can look back with peace and satisfaction knowing that we made the most of the time God gave us with them.
Leave a comment here to enter the giveaway for Renee Robinson’s book, Seeking Christmas! One winner will be chosen next Monday. (US entries only please)