Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Once the last Sunday of Advent is over, I start getting Christmasy. I break out my red and green sweater and fuzzy bear-snowflake vest. By then all the gifts I ordered online are arriving and I start thinking about Christmas dinner.
Most of the time J and I have a quiet Christmas Day following all the Christmas Eve services we celebrate. This year J has a Christmas Day service so I will get to have the kitchen all to myself to fix the roast of beef and Yorkshire pudding—the singular nod to our English heritage. There are generally telephone calls to family members and perhaps a movie in the afternoon.
But the real Christmas is in the Christmas Eve service wherever it is. It is in the ancient ritual and music that the world is made right for me. Candle lit faces sing a truth that can only be understood in song and poetry.
Christmas is not an event, some historical moment in time encapsulated in ritual. Christmas is a life lived reminded of how intimate God is. It is a reality of Divine presence and who dwells among all that I know and think of. With Christmas, God is never “up there”. God is constantly within my world whether it is as a child or friend or parent, or creator or spirit beyond the universes. And no matter how far God may seem to be in my restlessness, or how close in my consolation; Christmas Eve breathes God’s intimate breath into my soul and gives me the oxygen of faith to face whatever life holds for me for the next year.
Join us at 7:30 Thursday evening at St. Luke’s for this wonder moment of faith and Christian nourishment. Celebrate, worship and praise the God who comes to be with us within a community who cherish his presence.