I love Christmas. First and foremost, I love Christmas because it celebrates the birth of Jesus, God come to earth. I cherish the Christmas Story and all the wonder it brings. My favorite memories of Christmas center around Church. The singing of Silent Night in candlelight still sends shivers up my back. I cannot explain it but there is something about the Christmas Eve Service that is like nothing else I have ever experienced.
I also love the Christmas Season because of the time spent with family. I love to give presents and to eat the food we save for Christmas time. The winter season, new fallen snow, Christmas lights, the smell of evergreen trees are all things about this season that I love. I love the music, the charity and the feel of the season.
So this year as Christmas approached I told myself I would immerse myself in this season like no other Christmas before. i would not get caught up in the hustle and bustle, the gift buying and the commercialization of the season. I yearned for the awe and complete joy of the season I found as a child and I desperately wanted to connect with that feeling this Christmas. You see, as I have become an adult it seems Christmas flies by faster and faster each year.
It seems like I spend more and more time buying gifts, running from one party to another and that life and work do not slow down during this season. Then suddenly on the 26th it is all gone and I am yearning for it for another year. I feel regret for not spending time revering the season, for not singing hymns and for not sharing all of this with my children.
Today, I realized that is all my fault. I am the one to blame for not making time to worship Jesus and his birth. I am the one who is not slowing my life down to make time for my kids and my wife. I suspect they are more hungry for this time with me than they are for presents. This season we all need to remember why this is the greatest time of the year, why Christmas is so special and to savor that love and warmth that we feel at no other time.
So take this time, these last five days to stop and smell the evergreen, the sugar cookies baking and the new snow. Take time to feel the warmth of the love of family, the fire in the hearth and the glow of the season. Most importantly take time to remember why we celebrate this season, the birth of Jesus at the Nativity, the great gift of God coming to earth to save us. Take time to hear that sill, small voice.