I’m Not a Christmas Person…Wait, maybe I am

Dear Hopeful people,

It is the season of hope born into the world – Christmas! And, I must confess to you, I have never defined myself as a Christmas person. Don’t get me wrong, God coming to the world in vulnerable flesh as the ultimate sign of love for us is just IT, isn’t it? I mean, just sit still and be quiet for a minute and let that sink in.

Which sort of gets to my point about not being a Christmas person.  We are not allowed to just SIT and BE QUIET very much anymore. Everything around us tells us to keep going, keep working, keep producing. Keep the screen in front of your face. Don’t stop for a minute to ponder because there’s just too. much. to. do.

It’s hard, isn’t it? It just is. Which is why worship is so important.  Built in time for quiet and reflection and just to sit and not produce.  (Sorry if this is lost on those of you with kids when you’re busy wrangling them during worship. I do hope you see the value in even that time with them in worship and can feel it in your bones.)

Anyway, all this is to say I wasn’t a Christmas person until this year. I’ve never yearned for Christmas like this before. Advent (Oh, I’m so an Advent person. But you knew this, right?) has been dark, just as it should be. The waiting has been hard, just as it should be. Maybe you’ve had Advents that have been plenty dark. Maybe this one, for you, was just the right amount of dark and light.  This is the first Advent, for me, where I’m ready for Christmas. Even more than ready. For light to break into the dark. For God to get here already. For new life to spring forth into the dying world.

Sometimes Christians get uppity about Christmas being co-opted by culture and commercialism and we try and believe Jesus AT people. Put down the combative spirit. Christ will come. Christ comes into the midst of our over-scheduled, over-productive lives. Christ comes into the darkness of death and despair. Christ comes into the brokenness of your marriage, your family. Christ comes into the darkness of your cancer and the waiting.

God is with us. Emmanuel. Come, Lord Jesus.

I love you.