“It’s the most wonderful time of the year…..” isn’t it?

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year…..” isn’t it?

Nov 28, 2016

by Katrina Goodrich

Another year has passed and it’s time for the Christmas season once again. Every year it seems like the advertising for Christmas begins earlier and earlier — many stores had out full displays of lights and trees in the beginning of October. Honestly, by the time Christmas rolls around, some years I’m Christmas-ed out. This year I’ve been dreading the Holiday season. I was already exhausted by Christmas in the beginning of August when all of retail began preparing for the onslaught of the Holidays.

Every time I had to talk about Christmas with anyone it was accompanied by a grimace and a little shudder. I am not one of those people who dislike Christmas in any way. I typically love this time of year — I don’t even mind the bad weather and I am generally okay with people playing Christmas music at any time of the year — sometimes you just need that little burst of cheer. But right now, the idea of Christmas is exhausting. There are many different reasons for this, some more valid than others. While I’ve not exactly turned into the grinch — sparkling, shiny Christmas isn’t really appealing.

Yes, I know what the reason for the season is. That is probably why I’m not in full grinch mode making diabolical plans to snatch the Christmas cheer of all the Whovillians. I do, in fact, plan on getting into Christmas at some point during the season because it is Christmas. The promise and hope of the season is infectious.

Over the past few years I’ve not had much of an opportunity to celebrate Christmas or the reason for it. I’ve been bogged down too much in the commercialism of sparkly, white, perfect Christmas — maybe that’s the problem. As a culture, we are sold on trying for the “perfect” holidays. The reality is that the perfect anything on this earth is a myth we’re too busy chasing so we don’t have to notice the imperfection around us.

Reality is that not even the very first Christmas was perfect — at least not in the way we imagine. I mean, have you ever heard cattle lowing — not exactly birth-giving ambiance. And let’s not even get into the whole giving birth thing except to say that it’s not exactly a calm, sanitary, sparkly thing. Not to say that what you get out of the deal isn’t precious — but to imagine that Christmas could ever be perfect by earthly standards is a dangerous idea we get sold and we buy into every holiday.

Whether it’s buying the perfect gift or performing the perfect gift of service, it’s never enough to hide the imperfections of life. That’s something we need to remember — because even if we can delude ourselves into believing that we had a perfect day, then we crash afterward when reality catches up and it’s a huge letdown.

I’m not saying don’t enjoy Christmas. I’m not saying it isn’t a wonderful time of year. In fact as I write this, I feel the Christmas spirit beginning to take hold. I’m suggesting that instead of focusing on the perfection of Christmas, we focus on what

the perfect One did for a world in spite of and because of its depravity. Really take the time to look around this Christmas and see the world around you. Recognize that Christ came because of the dirty imperfections all around and within us. That is the reason we should celebrate. He didn’t come to make perfection. He came to save. When you embrace that, whether you love or dislike Christmas doesn’t matter — we are not celebrating Christmas, we celebrate the Savior.

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