Sometimes younger folks ask me for advice on how to survive the holiday season with immediate family and relatives when everyone doesn’t always get along. Although I’m no expert, I’ve learned some tips over my forty years that I love to pass on.
1. Accept others as they are—exactly as they are—without expecting anyone to change.
2. Realize what you need from other people and then release them from that duty. Receive what you need from the Lord and other friends.
3. Believe the best about people and assume they are doing their best.
4. Seek to be a blessing to everyone.
5. Remember that you are “seated with Christ” (Ephesians 2:6) when you feel lonely or disconnected at the holiday table.
6. Remember that you aren’t the most important person–or the wisest–and seek to learn from others and make them the center of attention.
7. Allow yourself to be fascinated by the lives of others and ask rich questions that you follow up with, “Tell me more!” and “What was that like for you?”
8. Remember that God sovereignly has you right where you are for a reason this holiday season.
9. Reiterate to your heart that at all times, God’s peace, power, hope, and love are available to you in endless supply.
10. Finally, bring a list of clever riddles, jokes, or holiday trivia to make people laugh. Everyone needs more laughter! Especially if children are present, bring out the jokes and tricks!
Enjoy your Thanksgiving!!