The night is winding down. Gifts have been exchanged and opened. Dinner has been cooked and consumed. I’m on my second piece of pie, grateful for drawstring sweatpants. And family. And friends. And for life eternal.
I sit here and I reflect back on all the build-up. Seems a waste to have Christmas for only one day. It should be a week-long event, at least. The music. The lights. The decorations. The spirit of goodwill and peace. I’m not ready to let any of that go just yet because there’s a change in the calendar date.
There’s so much to this holiday. For some people, they take the word of a teenage girl that she’s never had sex yet she’s pregnant with the Son of God. God steps down from His throne in the heavens and puts on flesh. When He ceases to be a fetus and is born, it’s in a unsanitary stable filled with animals. Some of the first visitors to welcome this baby are among the lowest of the low in social circles. He didn’t come with fanfare. He didn’t have royal parents. And when the ruler of His day does find out about His birth, He’s forced to flee for His life as a refugee to a foreign country.
He doesn’t go to the finest schools. His earthly father is a tradesman who raises Him knowing He’s not his son. When He grows up, He becomes a homeless man rejected by the religious elite. Sounds like a great Christmas story, right?
And yet it’s all true. This is who God is. He’s definitely not who modern screen-writers would use as a model for heroism.
Or a savior.
So on this day, no matter what you believe or don’t believe, no matter how tall or short you are, whether your hair is curly or straight, no matter your ethnic and socioeconomic background, wherever you call home tonight – I just want to wish you peace and joy. If you find they exist in your corner of the world tonight it’s because those are the gifts He came to bring. I hope they last you all year long. Merry Christmas.