Sunday, December 20, 2015


As a child I saw Christmas as magic, visions of sugarplums--or candy canes--and celebrations. Back in those days, school parties were common. We exchanged gifts, decorated trees, and some years Santa visited the classroom. It was a glorious time.

I also belonged to various clubs.  In Girl Scouts we made Christmas gifts, went caroling, and had parties. In some clubs we went caroling in nursing homes, had hot chocolate, and more parties.

Then there was pageant at church. There was the beauty of the white lights and the nativity scene, dressing like an angel and singing "Glory to God in the highest."

  As I enter my teens and twenties. Christmas seemed to be about nostalgia, feeling a little lonely and wishing I could be a child again, reliving the magic. Christmas seemed stressful. Commitments were complicated.

Then I became a mother. My child was 3 months old on his first Christmas. I held him in my arms and wondered what his future held. What did God have planned for my child? I held my son and thought about all those Christmas carols, silent night, mother and child. The feelings and emotions of Christmas were more real than I had ever before imagined.

Christmas was no longer about parties, or pageants, or dolls in mangers. It is about flesh and blood, God stepping down in the form of a human child.

I think about that first Christmas  with my son, that Christmas when i really began to understand, every time I hear this song Mary, Did You Know:

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