I believe traditions can be a good thing. Our family enjoys its traditions. One of my favorite is how we open presents at Christmas. Beginning when the kids were smaller we open 1 gift per night until Christmas Eve when Santa comes. So, if the kids had 5 presents under the tree, 5 days before Christmas we would begin opening one a night. I loved this because my children were able to focus and enjoy that one gift the whole evening and gifts didn't get lost in the madness of doing them all at once.
My family (mom and dad) had a tradition that only one person opens a gift at a time so everyone can enjoy the opening and then the gift giver gets a hug and kiss from the recipient of the gift. We have kept that tradition with my children. However, when we go to Phil's moms for Christmas, their tradition is everyone opens all at once and it is fun that way too. It is wild and crazy and everyone is laughing and having a great time. My children have had two different traditions given to them and I wonder which one they will use with their family. Will I be upset because they choose Phil's family's way and not my family's way. Not in the least. I will just be happy they love each other. The gift giving is just an outlet of their love for each other.
I have been thinking a lot about traditions lately. Mainly traditions in the church. Why we do things the way we do them and how sometimes those traditions become our religion instead of our relationship with Jesus. We have been moving away from some of our long kept traditions at one of our services at church lately and there has been quite a bit of controversy over the changes. Some love them, some hate them. The changes were made in an attempt to reach the lost of our community who may never have stepped foot in a church building and to reach the young in our community who see church as irrelevant in today's world.
I have my personal opinion on these changes and I know I have to be careful about my thoughts and actions. I don't want old or new traditions to become my religion. I only want Jesus. I only want a relationship with my Father. I only want to show others his grace and mercy. I believe there are many ways to accomplish this, but I need to be careful that I don't become so set in my traditions that I value my traditions more than my relationship with God.
Like I said earlier, just thinking.....