As children, the time between Christmases takes a whole lifetime to pass, and the magical season itself lasts for what seems like a year. Everything is sparkles and exclamation points, and the joy we conduct could power a Tanglewood light show. Christmas seems truly magical.
As we get older, the shopping, entertaining, and staying “merry” take more energy than we can muster, much less spare. The magic of Christmas is lost in the tangles of stress it produces. We tend to mourn the lost simplicity and cheer of childhood. I was sure stuck in a rut of confused depression for a few Christmases.
But then I started to understand things differently. As I’ve grown up and realized what a broken person I am, Christmas has started to mean more. It means even more now than it did when it was all sparkles and exclamation points.
God himself looked down through the mystical gauze of time and space and saw how helpless, hopeless I would be. He knew there was absolutely no way in heaven or earth that I could become righteous on my own. But for some reason, he loved me. He loved me with a fierce gentle love. He loved me so much that he would not leave me to suffer and fail. He loved me so much that he sent a piece of his own self to make things right.
As I’ve grown up, I’ve realized just how dangerously imperfect I am. I’ve realized what a phenomenally powerful, forgiving, loving Savior it would take to make me whole. God sending his son to stand between us and death is nothing short of a miracle. It’s even more magical than we realized as children.
Ironically, the gut-wrenching reality check of “Wow, I’m So Messed Up” made Christmas more special and magical for me. Feeling Christmas like a child was beautiful and perfect—while I was a child. But I think it’s important to grow in your celebration of Christmas. God will give us perceptions that match our spiritual maturity. I’ve loved learning to see Christmas like a teenager, and I’m fascinated and excited to see what “Christmas like an adult” will look like for me.
So this Christmas, don’t get too lost in the nostalgia. This Christmas, let God show you what he wants you to see. The magic of Christmas isn’t over when you turn twelve. God has beautiful epiphanies to reveal at every age; we just have to keep our hearts open.
P.S. Thanks for following, James, whom I can't find a link for! XD
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