Its about 11PM the night before Christmas. I came to bed about an hour ago and unfortunately I cannot sleep. Santa has already stopped by and my being awake did not stop him. But I do not have a huge urge to run and open the gifts underneath the well decorated tree. Instead I feel, almost, nostalgic. I have not ever felt less “Christmasy” in my entire life. My partner and I are not struggling financially. We did not have to charge any Christmas presents at all. We are happy. I hand picked each gift we are giving this year myself down to the individual Christmas photos I had a close friend make for us. I have wrapped each gift we are giving and I get to hand out each one myself and get to see the happiness spread across their face as they receive their gifts. Unfortunately, I am not feeling the joy Christmas usually brings me. Maybe I am happy in life and am therefore satisfied with life in general. Or maybe I am expecting the worst this Christmas. Maybe I just absolutely love winter and it is 70 degrees outside and tornadoes are being forecasted. Maybe I am deeply saddened by the thought of this being the first Christmas in my past 21 of 23 years that my sister will not be sitting with me tomorrow morning unwrapping gifts- her choice not ours. However, there is nothing I can do to change that and my heart is well aware of that situation and circumstance. As I lay in bed yearning to be able to sleep, I think of Jesus. The true reason for this glorious holiday season, right?!
Jesus was born around 2,048 years ago. The one and only perfect human being- EVER- was brought into this world by a virgin and the power of God nearly two thousand years ago. Let that sink in for just a moment…
There were these two kids, Joseph and Mary. Mary had never been married and was ready to get on with that part in her life. She met a great guy named Joseph who was pretty crazy about her. One night Mary had a crazy dream in which an angel came to her talking about a baby. In Mary’s day it was very traditional to have a child right after marriage and Mary and Joseph were getting pretty serious. God came to Mary and asked her if she would be accepting of a child from God. Mary accepted. However, at this time Mary and Joseph were still NOT married! Rumors started and Joseph heard from the wrong person that Mary was pregnant. However, Joseph knew that God had a plan for Mary and his and Mary’s unborn son. Joseph stuck by Mary’s side knowing that they faced rejection from others and the capabilities their son would have as well as the impact he would have in this world. Roughly nine months later on a cold dark night Mary and Joseph were headed to a place that would accept their son and where they could start a life. They came into a town that was pretty busy with people and could not find a place to stay that night. Every hotel/inn was full. Mary began having contractions and she and Joseph decided that it would be best if they found shelter-regardless of the location. So, Mary and Joseph found a manger and bed down for the night. That night the world’s Savior was born- in a wooden manger surrounded by animals and cold air. Little did the world know, but this individual would agree to be nailed to a cross and beaten and tortured to death in leu of the sins of the world. The life of Christ Jesus is absolutely incredible. And it began about 2,048 years ago.
I truly believe that may be why I have not felt quite in the spirit of the holiday as I typically do. It is not about lights hanging from outside the house or gifts underneath a tree we bring in from outside and attempt to keep alive for a month. It is not about the cookies we make or the thoughts exchanged between people about gifts. The Spirit in this holiday is holding on to the truth of this world and the LOVE that God shared with the world 2,048 years ago. God had ONE son. Only ONE. Not two or three, no daughters, and no grandchildren but ONE son! He sent that only son to this world in order to save each of us from all eternal hell-fire. That is some pretty serious stuff.
My prayer is that someone who needs this- finds it! This holiday is not about what you can give or receive but about the truth that we are created by a God who loves us and about his son who gave his life for my and yours.
Merry Christmas I pray that God blesses you!