The magic of Christmas isn’t magic at all

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Looking Deeper

Well by the time you read this Thanksgiving will be past and the leftovers will have been picked over and eaten. It seems like only a short while ago the kids were riding bikes, swimming and not looking forward to the start of school.

Today we find ourselves neck deep in the Christmas season. Black Friday Sales are over, moms are coming down from the shopping high and dads are recovering and praying they never have to go through that again. Christmas trees and lights are popping up all over the place and soon the whole town will be covered in shades of green and red and the glow of lights will keep neighbors up all over town. Those closet Christmas music listeners are boldly coming out, and you can almost hear the music in the air as you walk through town.

The signs of the Christmas holiday are all around us and with it comes the hustle and bustle of the season as well. There was a time in my life I remember thinking how long it took to get to Christmas. Now days it comes and goes so fast I feel like I just watched the kids unwrap last year’s present. I can strongly say I don’t like that feeling. I love this time of year.

Christmas time seems to be that 25-30 days in the year when everyone just seems to be cheerier. As a kid I could see this transformation take place in people. There is just something about this time of year that effects most people in a really good way. I wished there was a way you could box that up and sell it yearround.

I remember my childhood days and the magic that was done by my grandmother as her house was transformed into the North Pole. You could smell Christmas as you came up the driveway and you could see it a mile away. Thanksgiving was on Thursday and by Saturday it was as if a band of Christmas elves had invaded the farm.

I try each year to keep that same magic happening for my kids. I want them to feel Christmas long after the lights are shut off and the presents are obsolete. As I look back at the Christmas magic at my grandma’s house, I discovered a long time ago what the magic really was. It wasn’t found in box stored in the attic or in a sale found at KMART on Black Friday. It wasn’t even the days spent preparing enough handmade candy to give Hershey a run for their money.

No, the magic wasn’t magic at all, it was a miracle. See what made Christmas so great then was the love that went into it. It wasn’t my Grandma’s love, she didn’t have a special recipe for Christmas love. See her love came from the same source that all love comes from, it came from God Himself. All the special effort and time spent to make the Christmas season seem special came from the love that my grandma got every day from Father God.

She understood that Santa, reindeer, snowmen, and presents are not what make Christmas so special. The season that seems to transform the life of any Scrooge is not something we can ever fully understand. The transforming power that seems to make Christmas special each year is the same power, the same miracle that the world first experienced on the first Christmas when God gave the fullness of His love in the life of Baby Jesus.

That love that God expressed to the whole world is the same love that my grandma shared each Christmas. However, there is something we need to understand about this love, this love we call Christmas spirit it is not just a seasonal love. This love is the very presence of God in our lives each and every day of the year. All the hustle and bustle of the season does seem to stir up this love in a special way and we seem to bask in its glow a little more this season, but it doesn’t go away with the new year.

What I learned from my grandma and all those magical Christmases was this, the love she felt and the love she shared never stopped, it never seemed to run out, all year long. It wasn’t a special Christmas time love. It was the love of God she knew and felt personally, and she shared it every chance she could get.

Christmas time tends to feel better because that same love is shared more often. I want to leave you with my grandma’s trick to Christmas, it is sharing the love of God, not just in the season but every other day of the year as well. Have a blessed and Merry Christmas!

David Steinbron is the pastor at Glendive Evangelical Church and members of the Glendive Ministerial Association. He can be reached at daalstein@gmail.com.

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