Sunday, December 23, 2007

Sunday evening

Grace and greetings.

It is the night before Christmas Eve. Anticipation of tomorrow and Christmas day runs through our very selves, and yet, we each approach Christmas differently. We all have different experiences with the Christmas season, and they affect how we see the Christmas holiday. Most of us experience the highs of the season, but yet still experience the lows of expectations not met. Sometimes maybe we are expecting too much of this one day or time of the year.

I have the usual memories of childhood that most probably go through; the anticipation, the expectation, guessing what the gifts are, imagining what I could do with them. I remember one year I got a running suit, and I thought the suit was going to make me a better and faster runner, of course it had no impact upon my ability to run.

This will be my 51st Christmas; some I would love to relive again, and others I have long forgotten. But I keep coming back to one Christmas scene in my mind, and I replay it every year that I can: I think it was our first winter in Anchorage, I went to the candlelight service at Immanuel and came home in the quiet. When I got home, everybody else was already in bed asleep. As per our family tradition, the Christmas tree lights were only lights in the house along with the full moon outside. I sat down on the couch, and I just sat. I sat looking at the tree, and out the big picture window we had in the living room. Something in the dark and quiet was comforting. I sat there praying and talking to God, saying Happy Birthday once again. I find that is the Christmas memory that I think of the most; just sitting quietly with only the lights from the Christmas tree. Each year, I find myself repeating the scene.

Christmas is a time of relationships, of joy, and renewal. For many people, joy comes being with and around others. For this introvert, I find the renewal of spirit in the quiet place, where I spend some quality time with myself and God. I do not get caught up in the expectation of the commercialism of the season, just being “present” with God and myself is my greatest gift of all.
So I wish for you, that you are present with your God and family during this Christmas day, for that is the true reason of this Season, that God is born again anew in you.

Peace and blessings.

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