November 25, 2008

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like...

...Christmas? We’ve always approached the holidays a little differently than most. We don’t care for Halloween a bit, and usually just ignore its coming and passing. We typically like Thanksgiving because it’s just nice to be thankful, and it’s a great excuse to be together with family all day. Any day that folks stop to thank God for what He really deserves thanks for all year, is a good thing. Christmas we celebrate, but not like everyone else seems to. We put up a tree (some years) and put lights out (I love decorating with lights all year, really), but we don’t go all out with decorations. We do put out our manger scenes because they’re each special gifts or sentimental for some reason, not to mention, they’re the “reason for the season.” I really love bundling up in sweaters and lighting the fireplace and hoping it’ll snow. We’ve never been really big on gifts, though. We do typically get a few small things for our children, and we appreciate the bigger gifts that always arrive via their grandparents. We’ve also enjoyed the goodies that get baked, and riding around to look at the lights. There’s definitely something special about lights and a cool evening drive, and realizing that most of the “world” is celebrating Jesus’ birth, whether they admit it as that or not.

So we’re really being put to the test now. I’ve defended our position over the years (Why don’t you have a tree this year? Is this all the decorating you’re gonna do? Aren’t the kids going to get a big gift? etc.) with the argument that the traditions we choose to keep for Christmas don’t center around the external circumstances, but the internal ones. So here we are, in blistering heat, with nowhere really to put a tree, no decorations to pull from the attic, and no real plans to get any more “gifts” than the necessities we would be buying anyway (shh—don’t tell the kids that). And we go to the capital city to see white lights being strung, Santa and his reindeer at the park (how does he stand that big red suit?), and believe it or not, giant cut-out snowflakes. Mind you, these folks have never laid eyes on snow, but somehow that translates into Christmas for them, too, and Santa is wearing his thick fur coat. Go figure. Hollywood strikes again. And this year, we’ll keep telling ourselves that Jesus wasn’t really born in the snow, and nobody wrapped him in red velvet with white fur, and that Mary wasn’t cozied up beside a fire Joseph made to go with the hot chocolate. Maybe if we say that enough, it’ll start to seem like it’s really almost December here. Somebody should tell the weatherman, though!!

1 comment:

  1. You are SO right! I wish I'd raised Matthew alittle differently with less focus on Santa & more on Jesus. Granted, he was raised hearing the Christmas story but there was also me stressing over getting him "cool" toys, etc...So we hope it's not too late as he gets older to reinforce the true meaning of Christmas. Thank you for sharing! Happy Thanksgiving!


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