A couple of weeks ago, when it was still in the 50s, our granddaughter came over and retrieved our Christmas decorations from the attic in our garage. Both of us have resigned ourselves to not do any ladder climbing now that we’re getting older – although I know my husband still considers himself a mountain goat. I on the other hand am prone to falling down a lot, even when I’m not elevated.
I still recall days when we’d put all three of our kids in the car, bundled up in snow suits, caps, mittens, scarves and boots and go out of town to cut down a tree. Paul, the outdoors man was always game for an outing like this. He’s also an artist, so the perfect tree was his ultimate goal, and in freezing temperatures, the search became almost an obsession. We’d eventually find one, Paul and our son, Bob would cut it down and we’d head home for some hot chocolate and lots of warming up. In time, the adventure turned into a task and we gave it up. We even gave way to an artificial tree as time went on. Now we have a little two footer which requires very few ornaments. So much for tradition.
I distributed our many prized ornaments to my two daughters and soon to be daughter in law last year. So our Christmas decorating requires less work now, but we have to do it at a much slower pace. I never before would put decorations up until after Thanksgiving. This year I feel it’s mandatory. This year has been full of gloom and doom – impatience and anger – indecision and poor decision making – fear and unrest – injustice and so much more. If we ever needed a little Christmas, it’s right now.
We need to muster up those feelings of hope and promise that the Christmas season brings and if it means putting some red and green around the house, that’s what we’ll do. We’ll also start focusing on the true meaning of the season -how God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life.
Thanksgiving will have its restrictions. Meals will be less elaborate. There will be no Black Friday shopping except on the internet. The huge gatherings will have limited numbers of guests. It won’t be like any Thanksgiving we’ve experienced in my lifetime, but what a time for reflection. We can put our attention on the amazing story of God’s love – the infant God/man in a lowly manger – angels singing praises to God in heaven – a bright star that led to the light of the world.
Thanksgiving is like a precursor to the Christmas season. This year we can use a lot of it.