I love Christmas, I really do, but sometimes after it's all over I'm left with this feeling, like I'm not really capturing what Christmas is, kind of like Charlie Brown in his special. I mean I know about Jesus' birth, in fact I know the story inside and out it's just sometimes the rush comes so fast and then it's gone it's done and what am I left with? Our church is doing a series this year called "advent conspiracy" and it's spectacular. It is trying to bring back the scandal of christmas, trying to show us how christmas can still change the world. It encourages us to spend less, give more of ourselves, and really worship the Lord. I think it is especially piongaint in our consumerist society and in this economy when so many of our own are going with out. Did you know that bad drinking water is the number one cause of deaths in underprivaledged countries, and guess what it would only cost 10 billion dollars to give EVERYONE clean drinking water by drilling wells etc. That sounds like a lot until you find out that americans spent 450 billion dollars on christmas just last year!!!! It staggers me, and makes me feel so ashamed.
Brian and I are jumping in this year and I can't tell you how much I'm enjoying myself. Our christmas tree is actually a real charlie brown christmas tree (I found it at meijers) and it's perfect because it fits up in my plant stand so Conner can't get a hold of it, Hunter loves it because he loves Charlie Brown (he keeps going up to it and waving his hands like in the movie I think he expects it to change into a full tree) and it doesn't take away from my other decorations, but most of all when I look at the tree I remember "less is more" and I think about Linus up on that stage telling the story of Christ's birth. Brian and I are not buying each other gifts instead we are spending the day together christmas shopping for the boys and I am so excited, jut to be with him all day!!! It's what I'm looking forward to most this year (it's calling for snow storms so please pray that we can go) we're going to take the boys driving to look at lights, I've made our neighbors cookies, and have done a lot of sibling shopping on line to get good deals and save on stress. We're taking our money and buying a farm animal for a family through either project heifer or compassion international. They take the animal and teach a family in a third world country how to care for it etc. The youth group adopted a family from the community to buy christmas dinner for and presents for their kids.
I'm not telling you all this to sound awesome but to let you know how fun it is!! And it is fun, and more then that something I can't describe like I'm somehow getting a glimpse of the magic of christmas for the first time. I've heard about it; every pop star around sings about it but maybe I'm finally seeing it like I did when I was a kid.
The best christmas book is "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" I read it every year and she says something in there that really hit me this year,
"When Imogene had asked me what the pageant was about, I told her it was about Jesus, but that was ust part of it. It was about a new baby, and his mother and father who were in a lot of trouble--no money, no place to go, no doctor, nobody they knew. And then, arriving from the east some rich friends. But Imogene I guess, didn't see it that way. Christmas just came over her all at once, like a case of chills and fever. And so she was crying..."
You know we could be that rich relative to an entire world, we have the money the resources and we have the Lord. But mostly I hope that Christmas will come over you all at once this year, that we can all begin to see what the Christ child really was.
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