Every year I struggle to get into the Christmas spirit and I was expecting this year to be the same. Surprisingly, I’ve been in really good spirits. Now, I haven’t been overly festive or merry, my gift giving skills are sub-par as usual, and our unseasonably warm weather has not carried a particularly Christmasy vibe; however, I’ve felt the true Christmas spirit more deeply than usual this year.
The small moments have made the difference this year. It was practicing to sing Christmas hymns in a local Christmas parade and the lyrics whispering to my soul: This is what Christmas is all about. It was assisting a good friend in putting together a Nativity reenactment for our church party and hearing her voice crack as she talked to the kids about the importance of this story. It was my parents driving through the night to spend 24 hours with their grandkids. It has been fleeting instances with my children or good friends where we’ve all been 100% present. Today, it was reading “A Sweet, Sad December” by a blogger I look up to. This multitude of little things have directed me back to the true source of happiness and the reason we even have a Christmas season.
I think I’m finally grasping what the angels meant when they appeared to shepherds two millennia ago and said, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace good will toward men” (Luke 2:14). For many years I mistook the phrase “peace on earth” to mean the whole world was filled with peace. (Which if you look at the historical context of this Biblical story, makes no sense.) Now, I’m convinced that what the angels were really saying was the giver of peace and the ultimate example of goodwill toward men, our Savior Jesus Christ, was finally on the earth. Peace always has and always will come through Christ. Even when, as the song below says, “[T]here’s no peace on earth, / There is peace in Christ.” I hope that no matter what your life situation is this December, you can feel that peace.