There is something quite wonderful about sitting in a darkened living room with the glow of the woodstove burning cheerfully in one corner. Add in the glow of a lit Christmas tree standing in the other corner and the contentment is complete. It is blanketed in a beautiful stillness and calm.
I have the house to myself for a bit as my husband is outdoors enjoying that brief slice of day that is captured between daylight and night. The world is hushed. Traffic has slowed on the blacktop past our place and the chickens have gone to bed.
It is the perfect time to really ponder on this Christmas season. The last few days have been jam packed with preparing for the holiday. Shopping, wrapping presents, messaging kids for last minute details, cleaning, baking and wrapping some more presents; have filled the days.
In the midst of that busyness, this seemed like the ideal time to slow it down a bit and just feel the joy and the hope that is Christmas. This small space of time also gives me a moment to wonder about that night 2000 plus years ago when a baby came into this world.
I always kind of wonder if Mary could really wrap her head around the fact that she had given birth to the Savior of this world. I wonder if she knew what the next 30 some years were going to bring into her life. Did she know of the joy and the pain that she would feel? Did she know; but choose to focus on the joy that night?
How overwhelming would it have been, to be able to see exactly the path her Son would have to travel? Did she have any inkling that the wooden manger that held her Son would be mirrored by that wooden cross that held Him as an adult? Did she really realize that her Son would be the light of the world?
I have no answer to these questions and probably never will. I do know that I am deeply grateful for the reason we celebrate this Christmas holiday. I know that we were given an incredible gift that night so long ago.
We were given the gift of hope that gets us through so many difficult places in life. Hope that never quits and never gives up. Hope in the great love He has for us.
We were given joy that night. Joy, that had angels praising and shepherds hurrying to leave their sheep just to see what it was all about. This was joy…..not just happiness that comes and goes….but a deep seated Joy that goes hand in hand with Hope.
Sitting here, in the dark, reflecting as I look at my glowing tree I realize that those little twinkly lights are but a tiny reflection of the real beauty and glory that is the Light of the World. Maybe that is why lit Christmas trees are so special. They are reflections of something greater and something deeper.
My wish for family and friends this season is that you feel the hope and the wonder….that you discover the real joy of this season. I wish that the Light illuminates all the dark places in your life and blazes brightly.
May you be blessed and may you be a blessing to those around you. May you reflect the Light and know the joy of hope.
The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.
New International Version