I Long for Christmas
Ever sense I was a kid, I can remember longing for Christmas day. It always seemed like it would take forever for Christmas to get here. I remember the adults declaring that the year always went by so fast. But it never quite seemed to be that way for me. Then Christmas would come and go and the yearlong anticipation would begin again. How I longed for Christmas.
Honestly, I have not changed when it comes to my longing for Christmas. I’m like a little kid. It’s absolutely my favorite time of the year. I will say this: the adult mantra that the year flies by so quickly seems to have overtaken me without my even noticing it. My life is flying by, but my enthusiasm for Christmas has remained in tacked. I enjoy each part to the fullest.
When I was a kid, I looked forward to opening presents on Christmas day and the abundance of sweets and baked goods that would fill our house. The traditions – made so wonderful and exciting by my dear mom – made the month of December a memorable one. There are memories that I can still bring to mind of Christmases long past. I absolutely loved helping my dad find those special gifts for my mom and found it so hard to keep it a secret leading up to the big day. And, I still enjoy those continued traditions – making new memories along the way. But my heart and viewpoint has changed. As I have grown in my walk with the Lord, Christmas has become so much richer and deeper in meaning as I celebrate it. When I was a kid, I did not know Christ in a saving way. Oh sure, I knew Christ had come as a little baby in that manger thousands of years ago, but, to me, its was all part of the fun.
Now it is my life, and the celebration is more joyous than I had ever known as a little kid. I am celebrating the magnificent grace of Christ that has come.
Anticipation and longing is something that has always characterized the “story of Christmas”. The Israelites longed for the promised Messiah that was foretold to them by the prophets. The book of Isaiah told of how the little Savior would come to this earth. And, he spoke of it in light of what the Savior would do to redeem men from their sins. He did come, but many of those who anticipated missed it. But for the world that longed for something they did not know, the mystery was revealed.
But what should our longing be as we celebrate Christmas this season? I think that our longing should be that of us as a little child – longing for Christmas morning. Let us, with child-like zeal, long to be more like Christ. Let us long for deeper fellowship because Christ IS making us more into His image. But as we celebrate this Christmas, let us remember that we not only celebrate the incarnation of Christ, we long for the return of our Savior when all that is in Christ will be consummated and our eyes will see in full. Let this be your longing until He comes again!