A Christmas Thought

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[NOTE: Just a reminder that this post takes the place of this coming Sunday’s.]

As many of you know, I like to walk at the local mall.  I love doing that and enjoy speaking to the variety of other people who’re walking at the same time I do. But I don’t know many of them. Not even their names.

I wanted to do something this Christmas–I believe God inspired this idea–to reach out to them in a non-preachy way about what I feel is the true significance of Christmas. So I composed the following message, which fits nicely on one page, printed copies to take on my Christmas Eve walk, stuffed them in an envelope like the one pictured above, and gave them out. Not just to fellow walkers, but also to security guards and custodians I’m especially fond of.

Here’s what it says:

Merry Christmas from a fellow mall walker!!!

As we smile and say hi to one another, I frequently think about something Charles Dickens said in A Tale of Two Cities: “A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.” Very few of us actually know one another, no matter how friendly and pleasant we seem while walking. In truth, most of us don’t even know one another’s names, much less anything more important.

Although I can’t solve that problem, I want to share something I think is important. I believe Christmas means much more than giving and receiving gifts. Not that any of us could match the Gift God gave in sending His only Son into the world for our benefit.

Although I wrote this poem almost forty years ago, I believe it’s still relevant. I not only hope you enjoy it, but that it will speak to you about the real meaning of Christmas.

I’ll bet You were some Proud Father
The day Your Son was born on Earth!

Doesn’t it seem like just yesterday
When Mary began her labor in the stable?
You were there with her through it all,
Giving comfort and encouragement
With the same Perfect Spirit of Love
That Mary was accustomed to from You.

 When she contracted, You suffered with her.

 Though You realized what trauma Your
Son was going through in being born,
You knew it wasn’t right to interfere;
You had to let things happen as if
This Babe would be like just any other.

You watched the process You had created.
But I’ll bet you never felt so involved before;
You were actually watching Part of Yourself
Be born for the very first time,
And You monitored the whole non-sterile
Situation and saw that it was good –
Good for a world that just couldn’t seem
To understand or accept You any other way.

It’s no wonder You sent Your angels out
To deliver the Birth announcements in person!

 The merriest of Christmases to you in the true spirit of the Season!

Best regards,
Roger

You know what? I don’t know much about most of my blog readers, either. But I also want you to experience the true meaning of Christmas. So let me also wish you the merriest of Christmases in the true spirit of the Season!

Please share a comment with a Christmas thought of your own.

~*~

Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again on Wednesday. If you’d like to receive my posts by email, go to “Follow Blog via Email” at the upper right.

Best regards,
Roger

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6 thoughts on “A Christmas Thought

  1. Christmas. I like Christmas. The ideal of Christmas: Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace to men of good will. That’s it. It pains me to see such pathetic ingnorance abound in the world when things are really simple. to understand.
    As for gift giving, well, it’s over-hyped. Supposedly the 3 Magi brought gifts to the baby Jesus. I don’t know the significance of that. He was not aware of the gifts at the time. He was a baby, not some all-knowing avatar for Micheal the Archangel.
    I give gifts all through the year, not just at Christmas. Especially not at Christmas. My wife and I did not exchange gifts this year for the first time. The reason was that we didn’t have to money to buy what we wanted. SO we didn’t jusr run out and buy something to throw away later just because. We did get our son 4 of the 6 things he asked for. He was happy.. So were we.
    I like Toplos’ role in the Fiddler on the Roof. ”If I were a rich man, I’d doodle doodle …” but I wouldnt go around buying gifts. Most people need love, not gifts.
    Maybe I’m a cynic, I am certainly opinionated and I feel the vast majority – let’s define that as 99.9% of all Christians are not just unable but likewise unwilling you observe the golden rule. As for me, this is what iritates me when I hear people blubbering about their belief in Jesus. For me, belief is observance of his teachings.
    So yes, I like Christmas, but not he way it is observed.

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    • Well, Tom, you may be cynical and/or opinionated, but I’m glad you feel free to express your feelings and opinions here.

      As for the gifts of the Magi, they followed the star because they were seeking a king and bringing appropriate gifts for a king. I grant you they didn’t mean much to Jesus at the time (probably), but since Jesus was probably around two years old by the time the Magi arrived, he was old enough to recognize pretty presents, even if he couldn’t yet appreciate their significance totally. I’ve long believed that Joseph used those gifts to pay for their stay in Egypt and their return to Galilee.

      We make it a practice to contribute to a mission offering that’s taken at Christmas time and not to spend more on anyone than we do on that gift, which as our pastor likes to say is a gift to the birthday boy.

      As for “belief is observance of his teachings,” I believe it was James who said that faith without works is dead.

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  2. I suppose observing his teaching shows you have faith in the truthfulness of them, otherwise you wouldn’t be doing it. Obedience to the word is, then, a work of faith.
    I am really not a cynic in my everyday runaround life. I’m happy. When I’m in some pensive mood and think about the state of affairs in Christainity I tend to get a little histrionic.
    As for the Magi and Jesus being a babe of two or three . correct. I like your inference as to what may have happened to those gifts
    I don’t think Jesus completely knew about his heavenly position before he assumed the role of Christ at his baptism. Then, the heavens were opened up to him. So much interesting information left out of the gospels…

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    • I’ve never thought of you as cynical, Tom. I also agree about Jesus not knowing about his role until some point in time–possibly at the time of his baptism. I’ve always theorized that He started wondering about the possibilities at age twelve when he remained behind in the temple while Mary and Joseph headed for home, not realizing he wasn’t somewhere in the crowd. I like your idea, though.

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