This time of the year is packed with a complete bag of mixed feelings. We can be up one minute and down the next. In all the rush and anticipation, we find ourselves with not enough time, money or ability to process all that’s happening. Add to that, the madness occurring in our world and we have a plethora of emotions vying for our attention.
We spend weeks in preparation and it’s all over within a day or two. This most celebrated time of the year is here and gone in no time. Visitors come from far off places or nearby. The excitement builds as children open packages and wonderful food is served. Beautiful music inspires – old movies make us laugh and cry – memories of Christmases gone before are remembered. Then, without a beat of the heart, it’s over. Loved ones return to their homes and lives. Routine sets in. The joy of the season is wrapped up for another year and suddenly we’re faced with empty homes – Christmas bills – a dwindling bank account and new memories that will soon be forgotten.
Ups and downs of the season are typical after Christmas. Kids will soon return to school, university or their homes far away. Those who were unable to be part of the busyness will feel somewhat cheated and saddened by that. Those of us in our golden years will see the joy of a family who has come together in order to make our waning years more bearable. We think of the past and wonder how much longer we will be part of these celebrations. Age is a fact of life – right along with death and taxes. We know each Christmas is a gift just as we accept the fact that our children are also a blessing from God. As my husband and I approach our eighties, our thoughts turn more and more to heaven and we might even feel guilty about that.
Emotions can be like a time bomb running against the clock before the final explosion occurs. All the feelings we experience were experienced by that little boy in the manger. His life on earth lasted for only 33 years. He cried when His friends died or were ill. He bled like every other human being, but He bled holy blood. He experienced all the emotions that we do, yet, because He is God as well as man, He never succumbed to sin. He was the unblemshed, perfect lamb, required to take away the sin of the world.
For the average person, when emotions play a number on us, it can result in a nervous breakdown. With Jesus, the explosion came when He conquered death, defeated the devil and rose back to life. He did that so we could have the same result. All the emotions we feel at this time of year seem to be heightened, but the joy we should be expriencing because of the best gift ever, should be enough to last for eternity.
Instead of putting such great pressure on ourselves to make each Christmas perfect, let’s try to remember all the things that Jesus went through in his short time on earth. Be glad that our Brother, Jesus, was born and lived among us, so that we would have full redemption. Shed a tear or two over the great love we have from God, the Father – undeserved and unconditional. Give praise and thanks to God for His exceptional gift to everyone. It’s a time for mixed emotions.
“Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ, and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.” C. S. Lewis