T’was the Night Before Christmas

T’was the night before Christmas
And all though the house
Not a creature was stirring
Not even a mouse

And then the little ones wake up.  And your peaceful night of sleep is interrupted.  Again.

I hate Christmas music.  I just don’t like it.  I guess I’m just another Ebenezer Scrooge.

The thing about Christmas is that I feel our culture has lost the meaning of the day.  It’s not all about the lights and the gifts.  It’s not even about attending Mass or a church service.  All we see are Christmas Trees, sweets and a whole lot of colors.  Even us Christians have lost our way, focusing so much on the material aspects that we forget what this day really means.

I don’t feel the need to spend hours fighting for a seat at church, only to hear a message about all the “Christers” who only show up for Christmas and Easter and how we need to attend services regularly, support our local congregation, and maybe hear an off hand comment about why we are gathered this day.

To say that I truly hate Christmas music would be a lie.  I just don’t enjoy it unless I’m in that “Christmas Spirit.”

Christmas is a powerful time of the year.  We celebrate family and faith, honoring our Heavenly Family that descended down to live among us as an innocent child.  We celebrate the coming of our Savior and King who would one day give his life for us all, to die a death that we deserve.

Every year I find myself farther and farther from our society’s view of Christmas.  While I enjoy giving and receiving presents, the thing I want most each year is to be close to family and friends, those that truly love me for who I am.  Those that support me no matter what.

Throughout my journeys, I have always had a place to come back to.  I do not consider it Home, but it is where I belong.  I’ve been fortunate to have family that support me, where I can return and rest knowing that although my feet will take me on this journey of life, my roots are rooted in the love of family.

Christmas is a time where I am able to return to family.  It is a time where friends gather and enjoy the company of one another.  It is a time where we love unconditionally because we have made it through another year together.

It is a time where we reflect on the birth of this little one we will call Lord and King of Kings.  This babe, Jesus.

At times, I find it hard to focus on the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of Christ, when I’m focused on what is around me.  I find that I cannot focus on what’s truly important until I find myself back where I belong, among those I call home.  Home is not a physical place anymore, but where the heart can be found.

Over the past several days, I have come to rediscover the meaning of Christmas as I listen to the laughter and squeals of my niece and nephew.  I have figured out that true love is more than holding one close to the heart, but letting go and allowing them to be free.  I have found the Christmas spirit that I didn’t have before, through the gentle reminders of love and acceptance.

God could have come down onto this world wielding fiery swords and destroying all those that opposed him, but yet he came down in the form of a child, to show us what true love really is.

Let us not forget, this same child died for our sins on the cross.  This same child will come again.

So, this Christmas, hold your loved ones close to your heart and let their feet take them on the path that God has set before each one of us.  Be reminded of the laughter of children and the loving care of our Father in Heaven.

God Bless and PEACE

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