He had no further intercourse with Spirits, but lived upon the Total Abstinence Principle, ever afterwards; and it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God bless Us, Every One!
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol
We are on day 241 of 15 days to slow the spread.
I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite things about the Christmas holiday is sitting by the tree lights just sort of vegging out to Christmas music, or perhaps a favorite Christmas movie like Die Hard, having some egg nog with extra nog, and just soaking up the warm fuzzies of the season.
Narrator: This year he’ll need extra nog.
Usually my time to do that is after the hustle and bustle and after we’ve had to remind the boys to clear the wrapping paper from the living room.
That time between Christmas and New Years sort of hits a sweet spot and I cap it off with watching the Tournament of Roses Parade.
I’d love to have the pre-holiday time to do that. But for the last 20 years or so, either at our church Christmas production which is huge, and I mean huge, or now donning the red suit, the months of November and December are pretty busy.
They’re still busy this year. Just in a different way.
This year we also have the added stress of the election and the pandemic.
If that wasn’t bad enough, then our overlords tell us that we shouldn’t be gathering for the holidays.
I’m not one of those who considers Christmas to be threatened. Sure there’s a lot of animosity toward Christians and anything we try to do or celebrate. But it’s always been that way. Jesus even said so.
I don’t have my plastic nativity set anymore because I’ve scaled way back on the outdoor decorations. But at one point I bought it and put it up precisely because manger scenes were being removed from public property. I don’t have a problem with that because I don’t want the government to have anything to do with my faith.
This is different.
We’ve been told for months that churches can’t gather, and if they do gather, they can’t sing.
Now we’re being told that families can’t gather.
Heck the mayor of New York even threatened to round up the Jews in October.
We’ve seen that movie.
Here’s the thing. Christians and Jews have been perscecuted for centuries. It comes with the territory.
I fear that American Christians became too complacent. We just assumed certain things and now when we’re being challenged we’re having a hard time with it.
This could be a real testing of our faith, and of the strength, or weakness, of the American church.
Let’s be clear, it’s not about canceling parades, or parties, or our neighborhood cookie exchange. We as Christians need to remember that.
Like I said yesterday, be careful. But the government can stay the jingle bells out of my house.
But you know what, even if we can’t gather and celebrate like usual. Even if I’ll have to drink all the egg nog by myself.
Narrator: The bourbon is a disinfectant.
Even if all of those things are true you know what won’t change?
Oh, I don’t mean the plastic nativities and the parades and the presents and the lights. Sure we’ve lost some of that.
There have always been attempts to stop Christmas.
Herod tried to stop it from the outset.
Some thirty-ish years after that, they nailed it to a tree.
How we celebrate, or observe, has changed. And that will look a little different this year.
But you stop Christmas from coming no matter how hard you try.
Christmas doesn’t need saving.
And that’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.