There are two distinct ways to shut down Christmas… but don’t!
For some, it’s time to put things back where they belong, move the couch back to its preferred position, get the lights taken down from the front porch, move the manger scene from in front of the TV so the remote will work again – things that will allow life to return to normal.
These folks are offset by those who enthusiastically began decorating the day after Labor Day and continue adding bits and pieces and decorations and then leave everything in place until they reluctantly put it all back mid-April.
However you prefer doing it, it’s just fine as long as you remember several important instructions.
Recognize that Christmas really isn’t about a day, it’s about a Person. And that Person now resides in you and will not be leaving you ever! Christmas shouldn’t be the reason for losing sleep, running up a debt that will require ‘pinched resources’ for the rest of the year or trying to impress your family or the neighbors.
Further, don’t jettison your feelings of good will and kindness that’s been recently stimulated during the season as you throw your dry-as-toast real tree on the street to be picked up.
And don’t accidently store the peace you’ve felt lately in the same box as the Christmas bears, or include the very real presence of the Babe of Bethlehem and not get it out until next year when you find it stuffed in a corner of the icicle lights box.
Years ago Jerry Herman wrote a song made famous by Johnny Mathis entitled “We Need A Little Christmas (right this very moment”). I contend that in the uncertainty of the coming year, we will find many moments when we will desperately need ‘a little Christmas.’
Carry the presence and Person of Baby Jesus with you always. The next time your faith falters, your hope gets tissue paper thin or someone or something robs you blind of your peace… make sure the Jesus we worship is as close as He wants to be. Don’t go looking for Who and what you need out in the shed. He’s no longer a Baby. He’s the Creator, our Redeemer and our closest Friend!
“God’s there, listening for all who pray,
for all who pray and mean it.”
Psalm 145:18 MSG