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The Holidays are here. Makes you want to sing, doesn’t it.
What a wonderful season, full of love, joy, peace and busyness and mystery. A one-time event that is cyclable, filled with diversity, yet yearly offering us something we hadn’t noticed before.
If we are paying attention.
In Sunday’s comics of LuAnn by Greg Evans, she was preparing her classroom for the Holiday Season by writing “Merry Christmas” on the white board. A child entered and said, “We celebrate Hanukkah”. Luann added Hanukkah to the board. Another mentioned, “We celebrate Kwanzaa”. The conversation continued - as well as additions to the board - to include Omisoka, Muslim festivities, Winter Solstice and Seasons Greetings.
Luann’s final entry was “PEACE!!!”.
Does the above-mentioned comic strip bring peace to you? Or do you identify with the bold print and the three exclamation points? What is this world coming to?
I find peace. Wait! Before you quit reading, let me explain.
The Christmas message IS peace. And love and joy. But how do we find those attributes if we don’t understand the meaning of the words? I think of Jacob, our founding spiritual forefather, and his life trials and weird dream of a ladder with angels ascending and descending. When he awakened, he was afraid and confused. He looked around and said, “God was here all the time and I didn’t know it.”
Then Jacob did something even more weird. He anointed a rock and proclaimed that dream holy and that place holy. Then he rolled up his stuff and continued his known, yet unknown journey. (Genesis 12)
Jacob transcended. He began to think different thoughts about his family and his God and his complicated life-journey. Does God really love a cheat like me? Can I have peace even though I have an angry brother who wants to kill me? Is truth actually written on my wisdom heart? Is joy possible when I am only concerned about me and my? What else do I know that I don’t know that I know?
In watching Christmas movies and seeing advertisements, they seem to be more about Santa and gift than the Christ child. Yet in the background there is a song in the air. A song of a Holy Night. A Song of Joy to the World. Music moves us in mysterious ways. I find the message of a God who IS love - unconditional love. The God who birthed a son like Himself. One who loves us for no good reason. One who loves us with no expectations in return
One who empowers us to transcend, to grow, to love, to rise above.
What a wonderful season, full of love, joy, peace and mystery. A one-time event that is cyclable, filled with diversity, yet yearly offering us something we hadn’t noticed before.
Pay attention. Listen to the music. Harken to the short messages from your heart. Love. Forgive. Be kind. Overlook snarks. Move past regrets. Let it go. Sing.
We are in the midst of who we are and who we are becoming. As we are open to love and forgiveness, the Christmas message of peace and love is birthed in our hearts.