Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Christmas Thought

I have been reading some prayers written by Peter Marshall for my devotional times this month. In one of these he prays, "May we not spend Christmas, but keep it."

When we spend things they get away from us. We spend our money, and then it is gone. When we spend time, we are often wasting it. Spending is a losing, an eliminating.

Unfortunately, I have spent many Christmases. O, I convince myself that by my busy-ness I am fully enjoying the season. I attend all the programs, concerts and activities. I watch movies, read stories, sing carols, listen to the Messiah. I go shopping like a mad mad. I spend money that I do not have. I attend parties, reunions and celebrations. I add extra observances and services. On top of all that I want to serve others. I get all charitable at the holidays. I want to give. I want to provide. I want to help and do. And then Christmas is gone. And then I realize I have not enjoyed it at all.

Spending Christmas makes me think that for this year I must do more, give more, spend more and celebrate more than last year. I get all stressed out and in the end I have not enjoyed Christmas at all.  I have spent Christmas and it is gone.

This year I am going to try to keep Christmas. I will focus on it. I will think about it. I will ponder the incarnation. I will think about the gift of God to us, his son. I will consider the virgin and her husband, giving birth in a barn. I will ponder the mystery of the visitors, the angels, the dreams, the songs, the visions. I will do my best to keep Christmas.

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