“Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth.” Luke 2:14
Warning: STOP reading if you LOVE Christmas, look forward to it every year, believe it is the perfect time of year and are sad to see it go. This post is not for YOU.
To everyone else, Christmas is stressful. Peace is hard to find in line at a department store.
Finding the perfect gift isn’t always possible with a heart filled with grief.
It is a stressful time of year keeping up with the Jones or St. Perfect down the street, running from demons and pretending to be happy when the bank is empty, the heart is heavy, the sky is dark and the well is dry.
Peace may be absent. It failed to show up and chaos took over where we hoped love would grow.
Every year my husband and I counsel couples and people struggling during Christmas. Peace is at the top of their list but Santa must have them on his naughty list.
Sometimes we counsel each other because even pastors and their families can become casualties during Christmas. Disagreements may separate us around the altar.
Drop chaos and pick up love.
Read the Christmas story in Luke 2 or Matthew 1. Christmas started with a poor couple having a baby in a smelly barn with animals and poop. No one invited them for Christmas dinner. But Christ, the ‘perfect’ gift, showed up anyway.
And God celebrated with the greatest party the world ever saw (or missed). No matter how many twinkle lights we put up, it will never compare to the first, the only and the perfect Christmas.
Unlike the exodus from Egypt, Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, God never tells us to celebrate or even remember Jesus’ birth. Did Jesus have any other birthday parties during his time on earth? The bible doesn’t say.
While guilt is a very popular Christmas gift, it’s not biblical. Don’t worry – we can’t screw up Christmas! The cross will always be there to save us. The cross is an indestructible gift that can’t be torn, broken or taken away. It’s called grace.
Grace couldn’t be defeated. Our living Christ embraces us. We are never alone at the dinner table with crazy relatives, in line at a department store or in the bedroom. When our hearts cry out for a savior, Christ is born. Peace. AMEN!