Author’s Note: This was a post I originally wrote during December 2009, long before “the year that was” happened. I like to think I would still write it this way as we come into yet another Christmas. So to my readers, peace to you and your family. Merry Christmas.
An endless ribbon of red and white light bounces off the shiny retaining wall on the highway. The stores beckon to weary shoppers rushing to find the perfect gift. Money is tight. Tensions are high. The weather is as dreary as the workers trudging home in gridlocked traffic. If you didn’t see any decorations, would you be able to tell it’s nearing Christmas? Spend, spend, spend. Eat, eat, eat. Shop, shop, shop. Party, party, party. Decorate, tinsel-ate, snowman-inflate. A mindless boggle of all that is humankind.
Some get caught up in the materialism that comes this time of year. Some get caught up in the nostalgia, dreaming and wishing of times that are no more. Others appear to understand the season but on the inside they are hurting and confused. And still others say that you can’t celebrate the season without celebrating the birth of Christ and they abstain from outward celebrations and look inward. How do you celebrate this season?
I think I am all of these for I am humankind. I love shopping for that perfect gift, while thankful that I have all I need. I love decorating and putting up crazy lights, while thankful that I am, once again, able to climb and walk and lift. I love baking for others and eating myself silly, while thankful that I and my family are healthy. I love reading the story of Christ’s birth and “Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus”, while praising God for the gift of sight, of education, and a reason to celebrate. I love believing in the magic that makes the season a crazy, silly, mixed up roller-coaster, because without it there would be no tales of Christmas miracles. It’s the stuff dreams are made of. It’s what keeps hope alive for yet another sad, dreary year. It’s what helps us make it through and the feeling that everything truly will be okay. I still believe in Santa Claus. I believe in miracles. I believe in hope and faith. And I believe.
I celebrate for all these reasons. God is in all of this and He is in all of us whether or not we acknowledge Him. He IS the season, not just the reason.