10 Tips to Promote Peace at Holiday Gatherings

Today’s post was written to help Christian coaches, counselors and their clients navigate the holidays with peace and joy. Relationship expert, Jenny Grace Morris, MCLC, an award-winning coach, trainer and author of our Relationship Communication Specialist certification course is here to offer us 10 tips to promote peace at holiday gatherings.

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The holiday season is here. It’s a time when families and friends come together to celebrate. For many, it is an exciting and joyous occasion.

For others, the anticipation of spending time with some family members is filled with anxiety when they remember how a tactless word or unkind remark turned their joy and laughter into confrontation and argument at a previous event.

A situation like this needn’t happen. If we are prepared ahead of time, we can become a catalyst to create or restore peace.

Here are 10 tips to promote peace at holiday gatherings:

1. Pray for harmony prior to the day of the event.

I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers.
Philemon 1:4 NIV

2. Forget the past. If you keep mentally rehearsing the negative words said, you are keeping that conflict alive. Don’t anticipate that a similar scenario will occur.

Forget about what’s happened; don’t keep going over old history.
Isa 43:18 MSG

​3. Forgive yourself, as well as others, for past mistakes. This isn’t always an easy task. In fact, most of my clients say that it is easier for them to forgive others than to forgive themselves. We need to be open to receiving God’s Grace rather than finding ourselves to be exceptions to that rule.

Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another whenever any of you has a complaint against someone else. You must forgive one another just as the Lord has forgiven you.
Col 3:13 GNT

4. Find an amusing story to share. Practice it so that it comes out naturally. Be sure it doesn’t embarrass anyone or make someone uncomfortable. There is plenty of clean, clever and cultural humor to please everyone.

A cheerful disposition is good for your health.
Prov 22:17 MSG

5. If someone makes an offending remark, count to 10. Perhaps those seconds will diffuse the temptation to react with equally unkind words.

The tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider that a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.
James 3:5 NIV

6. Find a positive attribute that you value in each person you encounter. If an opportunity arises to express appreciation for what you noticed, take advantage and say something.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Phil 4:8 NIV

7. If you have matured spiritually and/or emotionally, allow that “new you” to be seen. Be aware not to fall back into old roles and behaviors that haven’t served you well.

Anyone who is joined to Christ is a new being; the old is gone, the new has come.
2 Cor 5:17

8. Expect that your relationships will strengthen during this Holiday season.

How wonderful, how beautiful, when brothers and sisters get along!

Ps 133:1 MSG

9. Spend time listening to one another and wait before chiming in, especially if you are used to dominating the conversation.

Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance. 
Prov 1:5 NIV

10. Welcome the newcomers, and recognize that they won’t get “inside jokes” which could cause them to feel ignored.

Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.
Heb 13:1-2 NIV

Want to learn more about relationships and communication?

Jenny Grace Morris, MCLC

Jenny Grace Morris, MCLC

For more in-depth training and information on how you can improve your own and others’ relationships with practical and biblical principles, visit: https://pccca.org/rcs/

Jenny Grace Morris, MCLC is based in the St. Louis, MO area. You can learn more about Jenny’s passion for coaching and biblical storytelling at http://jennygracemorris.com.

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