Like clockwork, it’s happened the weekend before Christmas for as long as I can remember. Cookie Day. Parents and siblings and cousins and nieces and nephews all gather to create our stock of Christmas cookies.
We’re like a well-oiled machine, turning out anywhere between 10 and 15 batches of cookies through the day, then splitting them up between families before everyone heads home.
The women often wear matching aprons. The older kids help the younger kids roll out their cookie dough and cut out cookies. A few people rotate through washing a never-ending pile of dishes.
This is tradition for us.
It’s been passed from generation to generation – a day we gather and mark time as a family. It’s a day we spend together, anticipating the arrival of Christmas and celebrating the fact that we’re all under one roof, even if it’s just for a little while.
But traditions can come in all shapes and sizes.
“Traditions are symbolic,” Sabrina McDonald writes in a FamilyLife article, 10 Great Ideas for Christmas Traditions. “Perhaps the most important purpose of traditions in the Christian community is to remind us of Christ Himself. This is most obvious in the symbol of communion. In Luke 22:19, we find Jesus leading the disciples in the first communion. At the end of this verse, He says, ‘Do this in remembrance of Me.’”
For some, traditions center around holidays, such as Thanksgiving. Here is how some Cru staff members use tradition to celebrate.
For others, a tradition could be different. It might be making time as a family to talk about each person’s happiest and saddest moment of the day or intentionally gathering for a meal together.
Ultimately, traditions help create stability in a world that is constantly changing. They highlight the things that are important, the things worth remembering and holding onto – things like family, gratitude, faith.
What traditions are part of your family?
What traditions would you like to begin incorporating into your life?
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