Do you know anyone with OCD? No, not the real medical condition. This is more about the holidays. We call it Obsessive Christmas Disorder. I have SEVERAL friends who can’t wait until December to decorate for Christmas so they decorate now. Yes, before Halloween and Thanksgiving. Yes, I’m serious. They live in different parts of the US and are some of the kindest people I know.
Before you judge them too harshly, let me just say, while seeing Christmas decorations already in the stores gets on my nerves, for some reason, these people do not. I look at their lives and in each case they have been through quite a bit. One has a husband confined to a wheelchair and does it to put the Christmas spirit in their home for more than just a week or two. Her husband and son might make comments under their breath, but deep inside they love it too! I wish this family more Christmas cheer than you could imagine. They walk a hard road.
Another friend just lost her pet dog of 15 years and had to do something to deal with the grief and sadness. She decided to decorate early. I hope it brings her some comfort and happiness during this time of loss.
And it’s not just the ladies. I worked with a man who now lives in Kentucky and he does elaborate Christmas lights each year. He has already begun hanging his outdoor lights. He said it takes him weeks to get them all up and he will be ready to turn them on right before Thanksgiving. It gives him something to work on that reminds him of his father, who faithfully hung Christmas lights each year. He lost his dad two years ago.
So, you see, everyone has a different story and reason for doing it. And though I don’t like all the decorations out in the stores before Thanksgiving, I have compassion on those that choose to decorate their homes, put up their trees early and hang outdoor lights. It gives them comfort. They are hurting. It fills a void.
For others, they just LOVE the Christmas season and what it stands for (JESUS!) and want to be surrounded by all the beauty. You can’t blame someone for that. We all could use a little Christmas throughout the year. Some leave a tree up all year. Hey, whatever works for you! 🙂
So I urge you, Peace Family, before you judge someone already decorating, say a little prayer for them. It might be the only ‘good cheer’ they have to hang onto this year. Include them on your list of people you bake cookies for this year, or have your church’s youth group include their house when they go caroling this year. And be Jesus to them. That’s what they’re looking for, anyway!