What an odd year it has been. A lot of loneliness, confusion, and frustration along the way. And now we are doomed to have a stripped-down Christmas. But hey, Christmas itself has not been canceled. The reason for the season will always be there even though the familiar traditions or gatherings are canceled or stripped down. And in some odd way, a stripped-down Christmas forces us to see what’s really essential about Christmas.
We all have our favorite Christmas traditions and we love to experience them every year. As you know, this year many of them won’t happen. But is it that bad? Just think about Mary and Joseph, they did not have a fancy Christmas. They did not have a big family gathering either.
She gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them. (John 2:7, NLT,*)
The trimmings were minimal, yet Mary and Joseph experienced a true Christmas miracle. Maybe it’s time for us to have an authentic Christmas instead of a traditional one. Covid-19 provides a perfect opportunity to do so.
Maybe we need to quiet down to experience the miracle of Christmas ourselves. A stripped-down Christmas might be the biggest blessing we’ve seen for a long time. It helps us to remember why it’s so important Jesus was born.
Without Jesus, we would not have any hope of reconciliation with God. We would not have peace or joy either. That would be a catastrophe, especially on times like this. We truly need hope, peace, and joy. Blessedly, we can find all that and more in Jesus.
As long as I have Jesus, the rest can go. This means, as long as I can stop in awe at the manger, I count Christmas a success. So in that sense, this stripped-down Christmas looks very promising, don’t you think?
Thank you for reminding us of the meaning of Christmas,
the amazing salvation plan you worked out for us.
Help us to stop in awe of you this Christmas season.
Open our hearts wide open for Jesus to be reborn in us.
Bless our stripped-down Christmas with your presence.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: How are you feeling about stripped-down Christmas?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim and friend, this Christmas. May God surround you with his love and presence!