A Christmas Reflection

In North America we are in the midst of preparing for Christmas. The stores have put up their decorations, and stocked their shelves. The frantic shopping and endless parties have begun. At a meeting this week, I heard a pastor say, “I’d like to do away with Christmas. It’s ruined.”
Many Christians lament what has happened to our wonderful Christmas celebration. Complaining doesn’t bring change. I remind you that Jesus is born not once a year but everyday with the birth of every child. We can close our hearts and minds to our society’s commercialized Christmas but we cannot stop the birth of Christ..
To regain our religious celebration we need to begin with ourselves. As you do your Christmas baking, ask for God’s blessing on the people who will be enjoying it. With each spoonful of cookie dough onto the pan, name and give thanks for your family and friends. Stir prayers for peace into your Christmas pudding.
Listen for God message to you in the Christmas Carols, the jingling of the Salvation Army bells, the excited voices of children, the tears of a grieving friend.
Search for places to share your many blessings. Give gifts of time at nursing homes, with kids activities, visiting the lonely. Remember that Jesus enjoyed a party. He’ll be present with you as you celebrate. Light the advent candles of hope, peace, joy and love for everyone you meet.
In your mind keep a running conversation with the baby Jesus. “Is this what you would have me give to my child…my spouse…my friend…a stranger? On December 25th read the Christmas story. You are the Wisemen searching for the Christ child. You have given him his gifts..
Remember, Jesus will be born. We need only open our hearts to receive him.