How To Avoid a Comparison-Christmas

Gold Brush Stroke

In the sparkle and glitter of the holiday season, it is easy to feel you don’t measure up. Your decorations aren’t the latest and greatest hanging icicles or chasing lights. You don’t have an outdoor nativity or themed Christmas tree ornaments. 

Your holiday wardrobe consists of a lovely 3-piece outfit left over from your first-ever family Christmas picture (19 1/2  years ago!), black dress pants, and faded-red and dingy-white sweaters. 

Your house is too small and too cluttered to host a Christmas gathering.

Interior design is not your cup of tea, nor for that matter is baking luscious breads, bars, and cookies.

Your dessert consists of thawing a Wal-mart lemon meringue pie, or better yet, stopping at Bakers Square for a luscious French Silk one.

The last turkey you roasted served better as the chosen football for the afternoon game than the main course.

You’re beginning to feel that everyone does Christmas better than you do.

In the excitement and hype of holiday preparations, it is easy to fall into the trap of comparison. 

Avoiding a Comparison-Christmas

Perhaps we forget… 

Christmas wasn’t born in the dazzle of lights and the splendor of the latest fashions. Christmas birthed to stars overhead and worn travel clothes.

Christmas didn’t begin in a mansion or castle; maybe not even in a room with furniture. Christmas started in a lowly shelter with perhaps only a manger for a crib.  

The first Christmas fare didn’t consist of roasted turkey and pecan pie. The Christmas meal was likely little more than stale bread for the adults and warm milk for the babe. 


The first Christmas dawned in paltry physical conditions, yet was resplendent in glory, majesty, and meaning. 

The first Christmas dawned in paltry physical conditions, yet was resplendent in glory, majesty, and meaning. Share on X

It’s not wrong to deck the halls with holly and lights and beauty. But when we reflect on the circumstances of the Savior’s birth, our expectations of Christmas-present will be tailored to reflect the glorious miracle of Christmas, not mimic the elegance of our neighbors. 

Focusing on the mystery of Christmas will center our hearts on the eternal One, not on the temporal many. Because preparation for Christ’s coming must begin first in the heart before spilling out through the hands.

Focusing on the mystery of Christmas will center our hearts on the eternal One, not on the temporal many. Share on X

Only then can we avoid the trap of a comparison-Christmas and be truly ready to welcome the King. 

“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3:2)

Reflections: How do you prepare your heart to be filled with the glory and wonder of Christmas? What is a favorite Christmas tradition or decoration you look forward to each year? 

Joining multitudes who are taking Ann Voskamp‘s 2013 Joy Dare. Apparently for the month of December, we are not linking up at A Holy Experience, so you’ll have to just enjoy my list (#2376–2396, read the entire list by clicking here):

  • Uplifting high school Christmas concert; Rach pressed “I love you” button directed at me—1st time ever tonight-*tears*; Lessons
  • Forever Hope—even in our messes; 7th & 8th grade Christmas concert; Reaching across the miles with Christmas cards
  • God working through unlikely “coincidences”; Hearing Zach practice his Cantata solo—chills; Sharing morning tea with my oldest
  • Spent the day with my oldest #rareevent; Early mornings helping the kids get off to school; Gift of plenty to gift to others
  • Understanding, compassionate heart of our youngest; Celebrating the Eagle Scout achievement of a friend; Time to rest
  • Mega-marathon game of Axis & Allies with my boys; Ice-glazed beauty;”Holed up” with intention of just enjoying time together
  • Nerf war with only glow necklaces to indicate our location; Night walk in a peaceful blanket of snow; Boys playing their instruments together
By His Grace,


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Julie Sunne

Hello, I'm Julie, an imperfect wife and mother of four. Life in this broken world is not always easy. Yet, joy can be found in each day through the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I find it's easy for our day's blessings to get lost in its happenings. But God's "mercies never end" (Lamentations 3:22) and His "grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

May the posts and pages on this site offer you a measure of peace and encouragement.

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