Merry Christmas, friend.
Yes, I realize Christmas Day was three days ago. Some of us have moved on… in our homes and in our hearts. Some of us have removed any trace of Christmas’ existence, and we’re ready for the new year ahead. But, me? I’m not quite there yet.
I’m soaking in the hope of Christmas for as long as I can.
For some of us Christmas was hard. We missed the presence of loved ones. We couldn’t find enjoyment in the holiday because we were too exhausted and stressed to do so. Or, maybe Christmas didn’t go as planned. The expectations we put on the holiday didn’t quite measure up. Maybe we felt let down or left out. And, it’s possible some of us just couldn’t get in the Christmas spirit for whatever reason.
And, you’re glad the holiday is over.
I can understand. There were years I couldn’t wait for Christmas to be done. I was tired of the commercialism. I just wanted to get back to work. And in some years, Christmas was just too painful to allow it to linger.
But, this year, I believe Rediscovering Christmas helped me to reclaim the hope Christmas brings.
Instead of wanting it to end, my desire is to live in Christmas’ hope all year long.
“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’” Matthew 1:23 NLT
I’d like to propose a potentially new thought for the coming new year…
What if you and I chose to live in Christmas’ hope in 2017? What if we lived each day encircled in the truth of “God is with us?” And, what if we conducted our lives and experienced every situation through the wisdom, strength, grace, and love of Immanuel?
Would it make a difference? Would 2017 be different than 2016? Is it possible we would have more peace? More joy? More strength and less stress? Would our perspectives be brighter and our attitudes uplifted? Would we/could we impact our world?
I believe each answer is yes.
We may not be able to control all of life’s events and experiences in the year ahead, but living with the perspective of “God is with us,” 2017 may just be the year we grow exponentially in our faith. And, in doing so, we may just be the change we desire to see in this world.
I pray your Christmas holiday was wonderful, friend. But, if it wasn’t, know you aren’t alone. No matter what kind of holiday we experienced, Christmas’ hope is found in “God is with us.” Christmas’ hope is found in Jesus. Christmas’ hope is found in rediscovering Christmas.
I pray God opens our eyes to see Him at work in our lives. May He fill us to overflowing in Christmas’ hope in the days ahead. May He also grow us, strengthen us, and guide us as we embrace “God is with us” in 2017.