stolen ideas…a good thing.

As the holidays approach, I am faced once again with challenge of making them meaningful–more than just a chance to see family and get stuff. Not that I can “make” them meaningful. They are meaningful because of the realities they represent. My hope is that I can help the meaning to be realized in myself and my family.

So here are some ideas that I’ve taken from others to help us do just that:
1) before eating thanksgiving dinner around the table, remember the things you’re thankful for from the past year. (stolen from my dad)
2) limit gift-giving to three gifts, representing the three gifts of the wise men to Jesus. (stolen from my mother-in-law)
3) reenact the Christmas story in theatrical form with costumes on Christmas morning. (stolen from our dear friends, the Millers)
4) bake a play-dough tomb, with stone to roll away, Jesus, and a wood cross. Place Jesus in the tomb on Good Friday and remove him Sunday morning before kids get up, so they can discover Jesus risen from the dead. (stolen from Noelle Piper’s Treasuring Christ in our Traditions*)

I have given myself permission to unabashedly take traditions and ideas from others in order to enhance our family’s own traditions, with the desire that we will be drawn to what’s really important: Christ coming to earth as a man, crucified for sins and risen to defeat death.

What great ideas have you taken from others and made your own? (original ideas also welcome, with the understanding that we might steal them 🙂

*a book worth owning with a plethora of great ideas to steal.
**stealing ideas while patent pending…a bad thing.

3 thoughts on “stolen ideas…a good thing.

  1. Praise the Lord for families with God-centered traditions to steal. Thanks for the great ideas! Here’s our Easter tradition: A couple of years ago, MOMs did resurrection eggs. So for the last couple of years, we have done an egg hunt on Friday or Saturday for the first 11 eggs. Then we open each egg and read the story of Christ’s passion based on the eggs and the symbols inside. On Easter Sunday,we hide the first eleven eggs again — this time with a treat inside, representing the good things Jesus purchased for us by his death. We also hide the twelfth, empty egg and read the resurrection story when that egg is found. After the story, the kids get an Easter basket,symbolizing that Jesus’ resurrection is the best news/gift of all and because He lives we also may live.

  2. We have a family tradition at New Years of “looking back and looking ahead”. It is a time that we share some of our best memories of the past year and God’s faithfulness in tough times. Then we look at the year to come and share the prayer requests we have for upcoming things. It usually involves a box of Kleenex and good bonding time. The kids are typically involved in a movie during our sharing time.

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