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Bec Oates | 98five blogger

Celebrating Christmas when you want to punch someone in the face…

…like when you’ve spent three months researching and preparing the perfect Christmas lunch, something on trend, perhaps Jamie Oliver-esque, with hip rustic table ornaments made from old jars, a salad with kale, some socially-responsible bon bons, colour-coordinated crockery and perfectly-placed jugs filled with Christmas cheer when Aunty Vera arrives with her three-day-old potato salad that gives everyone the squirts, presented in the crystal bowl she received as a wedding gift in 1969 and plonks it with pride in the middle of the table sending your kikki.K mini wooden peg place holder cards flying into your bowl of raw vegan chocolate fruit balls.

All she wanted for Christmas was a nap

And you want to punch her in the face.

Or perhaps you yell at the kids in the car on the way to lunch because you are tense about seeing your sister who never ceases to offend you and you arrive covered in a thick shell of bitter resentment ready to endure the festivities and she opens the door, ushers you in, gives you the once over, spins you around as she laughs, nudges you and slaps you on the back saying, “Look at you! You even have back cleavage.”

And you want to punch her in the face.

Or perhaps you are sitting on the couch watching the kids open their presents and you look over at your spouse with sorrow and regret, staggered by the enormous crater of sadness and hurt that has formed between you, and a tear slips down your face as you mourn the loss of what was, and steel yourself for the prospect of what will be.

And you want to punch him in the face.

Or perhaps you wake on Christmas morning with a pit of grief and loss threatening to destroy you, you swing your legs over the bed and gaze at the empty pillow of your loved one who is no more, whose memory brings joy and unbearable pain, and you wonder how you will survive the day, if you want to survive the day.

And you want to punch God in the face.

How do you celebrate Christmas when you are in pain? When you have suffered injustice? When you are hurting?

Well, here’s a cheery idea…


Wait — don’t punch me in the face!

I am going to try, just for one day (and then I can go back to normal, thank the Lord), to put aside my anger, fear, resentment, grief and hurt and serve. BORING…maybe, HARD…definitely, but  I reckon that serving is a good way to celebrate the King who gave up his life for me.

Wash Aunty Vera’s crystal bowl and ask her to bring it again next year. Pay our sisters a genuine compliment, squeeze the hand of our spouses, surrender our pain to God.

Just for one day.

You never know, it may be good, and we might keep on doing it.

No promises though, because the face punching option is still quite appealing.

ONLINE USE_Bec Oates profile photoBec is a strikingly ordinary individual and a faulty follower of Jesus. She is best known for awkward moments, inappropriate thoughts and Australian humour. Her blogs reflect her deep commitment to discovering God and her passion for the poor. Bec has a husband, four ankle biters and a dog that matches the cushions on her couch, because that’s important. (Note: Bec’s blogs are adult-focused and not meant for children) | Follow Bec on Facebook| Instagram


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