Christmas Dreams

We fast and pray for God to change our hearts, raise up godly men, and give the gift of marriage to those who desire it.

It came early in November – that momentous text from a friend letting me know that Christmas movies were now playing 24/7 on TV.

I am a sucker for Christmas movies, even the B-list, chick-flick, rom coms that constitute a countdown to Christmas. Through my hours of watching, I’ve identified two basic plot lines:

1) Girl is in a serious relationship with Boy 1. Something holiday-related causes girl to meet/notice Boy 2. Girl decides in a matter of hours/days that she is in love with Boy 2, and it never was quite right with Boy 1. As soon as we start to feel sorry for Boy 1 for getting dumped over the holidays, someone from his past swoops in, and he falls for her, so everyone lives happily ever after at Christmastime.

2) Single girl with no prospects who is dreading going home/being alone for Christmas meets handsome stranger and falls madly in love. Usually there are Christmas lights involved. And snow.

If I’m being honest, these plot lines don’t differ that much from day dreams I’ve had since I was a little girl. Finding that guy who makes my head and heart spin. Having someone to share a kiss under the mistletoe. Seeing a handsome stranger on the street and within five minutes having our entire lives planned out from dating to marriage to kids to the cute old couple we will be.

While I don’t think having hopes and dreams of romance and marriage is wrong, there comes a point where we have to draw the line and make sure our hearts and minds are captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5).

As the familiar passage in Philippians says:

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things (4:8).”

I would take this a step further and say that whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable also depends on the context. For example, marriage is noble and lovely, but if thoughts of marriage (or the lack thereof) cause me to be bitter or angry, I’m probably not obeying the admonition of this verse. The desire for physical intimacy is true and God-given, but if dwelling on it grows lust in my heart, my thoughts are not pure.

As we fast and pray this first Monday of advent, let’s pray for God to protect our hearts and minds from distracting, unedifying thoughts and fantasies and to renew our focus on the gift of His Son and the hope we have in Him.

Praying with you,

Emily

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9 Responses to Christmas Dreams

  1. Katy says:

    Love this post. This is my first married christmas, and trust me, I am happy about that fact, but a part of me is missing my single Christmases– they were painful at times, but I think it gave me some opportunities to let my longing for marriage point me to my even greater longing for our savior and His return.

    Sadly, it took many years before I was able to do that (and even when I was able to look past false christmas “hope” for the real Christmas hope, it was a struggle!) I wish I had read wise words like yours much sooner!

    Praying for your ladies! Being single at the holidays can be hard and I pray the Lord reminds you of his presence, comfort and hope daily!

    • Emily says:

      Katy, thank you so much for sharing your story and your words of encouragement. You are so right – there’s definitely the false Christmas hope that keeps us from seeing the TRUE Christmas hope in Jesus. Blessings, and Merry Christmas! 🙂

  2. Daniela says:

    Wow Emily, this is exactly what I needed today. Thank you and may the Lord richly bless you!

  3. Laura says:

    This post was incredibly timely! I just spent five days at home for Thanksgiving, and Hallmark is now playing Christmas movies all day. We watched several, and each time I would find myself getting wistful. This time of year can be hard, but it’s good to keep things in perspective:)

    Thanks for this post!:)

  4. missarlener says:

    Hi I tried to comment but I don’t have a wordpress acct. My question is “do u have to limit how many or what kind of movies u watch to keep ur thoughts under subjection?”

    arlene

    >

    • Emily says:

      Arlene, I think this is different for everyone. I have times when I am perfectly ok with watching a rom com (I do stay away from anything that is explicit), and other times when it doesn’t do good things to my heart depending on what I am going through at the time I’m watching it. I think you have to know your own boundaries and do a check of your heart before/during/after and not be afraid to simply shut something off and walk away.

      Hope that helps!

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