I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Ours was uneventful, which is what we wanted. We watched football, ate, went shopping and decorated for Christmas!! (Amazing how Christmas decorations disappear just by sitting in the basement all year)
Tomorrow is December 1st. It is officially the Christmas season. There is more hype, attention, and commercial focused on Christmas than any other holiday. Not even Thanksgiving has nearly the amount of hoopla that Christmas does. There is no other season or holiday like Christmas. And because of that, I want to put the brakes on and yell to the world “stop!”
Above all the holidays, Christmas seems to go by the fastest and do you know why? Because we make it go by fast. With programs, gatherings, parties, the month seems to fly by. Add in Christmas countdowns and it’s like the month never happened.
This is why I refuse to partake in any Christmas countdowns. Tear off a part of a paper-chain, open a door, read a part of a story or eat a piece of chocolate, and with that, I feel the day is rushed to mark off another day.
To me, countdowns rush the month and the days leading to Christmas. The days tend to go fast enough without the holidays. This season is the one, out of all of the holidays, that we need to slow down the most. Take a breath, don’t think about the following weeks, and all the work that needs to be done eventually, live in the moment of today. The moments of real magic that is the air.
There is a magic that surrounds the season of Christmas, a feeling of joy, happiness, excitement, and kindness that is only felt at Christmas.
We need to open our hearts and minds to it, because behind all those feelings is a message of joy and love, and it’s the reason we have Christmas.
Jesus is the reason for Christmas. It is a time to celebrate when the Messiah came as a baby to save a sinful world.
Luke 2:11 says (NIV)
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is the Messiah, the Lord.
Jesus came into the world as a perfect child, sinless, without blame. He would lead a perfect life and then died on a cross for a sinful, imperfect, full of blame world. Matthew 1:21 says
And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.
Christmas is a lot of things, and often the true meaning of the season is lost in all the hubbub. My favorite Christian artist Francesca Battistelli, wrote a Christmas song called ‘Christmas Is’ and the first part of the song talks of all that Christmas is often…
Christmas is music and family in town
Christmas is Snoopy and Charlie brown
It’s anticipating that snows going to fall
Christmas is caroling kids at your door
It’s paper and ribbon all over the floor
Christmas is rooftops covered in lights
Christmas is caring for those who got nothing
It’s dropping your change in the bell ringers’ bucket
But, then at the end of the song, we are reminded of what Christmas really is…
Christmas is all of these fun things for sure
But Christmas is really, oh so much more
It’s good news of hope for the whole world to because
Christmas is Jesus
It is Jesus’ birth that we celebrate each Christmas, not the lights, the tree, the decorations, or that one in a million gift. We remember and reflect on the birth of the Perfect Lamb of God.
Why would we want to rush that? Don’t rush the days with countdowns that make the days fly by without warning.
Live in the present of the Christmas magic I talked about because it is everywhere. From the softly falling snow to the decorated tree, making cookies, music, and the bell ringers.
And you might ask, what magic? All you might see is chaos and even greed. To find the magic and wonder, look at the snow. Each flake that falls is unique, not one snowflake is like the other. They may look like white dots floating to the ground, but each one has a shape and design unique to each flake, designed by an amazing God.
At night, when your tree is decorated, turn off all the lights, leaving the tree on, and count your blessings by the light of the tree.
Blast the Christmas tunes, get messy in the kitchen, and make dozens of cookies and treats. Take a plate to a neighbor, and share the magic of Christmas and Jesus’ love to the ones who need it most.