Christmas is different. The magic is different. Our lives are different our family is different. I used to love the mystery and beauty and the excitement. I didn't worry about materialism or who got what present or whether what I picked was thoughtful enough. I didn't worry if I was making someone feel bad by what I bought or if that delicious cookie just added a pound to my waist. No, Christmastime was simpler and it seems that wasn't long ago.
Tonight our children are nestled all snug in their beds sung to sleep by last-ditch desperation. The 12 days of Christmas start out easy to remember but who knows how many Lords, Pipers, Drummers, Ladies and Maids we have? Which ones leap? Pipe? Dance? Milk? At least we know who drums. Eyes were drooping at 8 Maids a Milking so I could hummm 11 hmmmers hmmming on down and no one was the wiser. I'll need to visit wikipedia I just have to know.
Jesus, your birthday is fun. We all get presents. I'm not sure it makes much sense. I'm not sure we should be making wish lists but tonight I'll make two lists. One of the things I'd like to give:
1) Glory and credit: After giving Santa the credit for a few measly gifts I realized that you are the great giver and often I get the glory. May I point to you. May I give you glory.
2) Grace: In my own pride I take grace, demand grace, withhold grace and begrudge grace. May I look at your face an feel generosity not because someone is watching but because you gave first and I want to give freely.
3) Time: Oh that valuable and rare resource I once had so much of and now is hard to find. Please let me give freely to others, use wisely and use thankfully.
Others I pray to receive:
1) Your eyes: Please let me see things the way you do. If only in blinks and flashes let me see with your eyes so that I can love more, give generously, improve, continue, persevere, trust, focus and surrender.
2) A slow tongue: You know how fast I talk, quip, respond. Give me a slow tongue that I may wield it more gracefully. Give me a slow tongue that I may use it for good. Give me a slow tongue that I may become patient and humble and more like you.
3) Soul-focus: Daily I focus to train my body. When I don't get to work out or run I'm a grump. "Physical training is of some value..." (1 Timothy 4:8) "but godliness has value for all things..." Oh that I can grow to know more than my daily physical training because this body is like a breath or a flower it is here today and gone tomorrow.
Merry Christmas to you and yours. May the love of the baby born, grown, given and received for our salvation be yours today. May his gifts be many and your eyes open.