Christmas is my favourite time of year, and always has been.
Not the tacky Santas, you know, the ‘real’ ones that chase you around shopping centres or the ‘fake’ ones that exist as giant blow up plastic sitting outside car dealerships.
I love Christmas. Not the consumerism side, but everything else.
Memories of coming home from school and walking through the front door to hear Christmas music already playing. Or our family decorating the Christmas tree together and placing certain ornaments that belonged to us. (My brother, a trumpet. Me, a snowman with a blue scarf.)
Watching, and then helping, Mum decorate chocolate shortbread before eating the leftover dough. Being able to look in our stockings before church, and the impatience of getting through a morning service to then open the actual presents (sorry Jesus!).
Making my family laugh with bizarre homemade Christmas cards. Eating leftover Christmas food on toasted cheese sandwiches on Boxing Day. Listening to Denis Walter sing ‘Do You Hear What I Hear’.
Then growing older and falling in love with ‘O Holy Night’, which is my favourite Christmas carol. Or this year when, for the first time I’m not with my family on Christmas day, I made my own Christmas food (pasta salad and turkey followed by chocolate mousse).
I love Christmas movies (NOT HALLMARK). Give me Sandra Bullock in While You Were Sleeping (1995), or Kate Winslet in The Holiday (2006); heck, give me some Die Hard (1988). I love me a Christmas romance (SO LONG AS IT’S NOT A HALLMARK), and will probably watch one tonight.
But I have to admit; this year doesn’t feel quite as Christmassy. But maybe every year as an adult is like that, because nothing quite measures up to the feeling as a child when you’d have five weeks of school holidays stretched out before you and opening presents was the epitome of a good time.
But that’s not even the point of Christmas, is it?
It’s about Jesus’ birth, which I’m probably not as joyful about as I should be. My thankfulness and worship bubbles up naturally on Easter, thinking about what Jesus did and what He went through. It’s a mixture of being sad and being grateful.
But Christmas doesn’t impact me the same way. Maybe I’ve yet to learn how to subject myself to true thankfulness.
Perhaps, before watching a Christmas chick flick, I should open up my Bible and read the story of Jesus’ birth. How it was all orchestrated by God. How blessed I am to know our Saviour.
Yes, that sounds like a plan.
Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.