Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Although I'd like nothing more at this time than to bury myself beneath a mound of comforters I now sit myself down (at 12:45am) to liberate this blog post which has been clanging at the bars of my mind, begging for the freedom of electronic publishing. Perhaps even before my Thanksgiving turkey was fully digested the ideas for this post began running laps in my head. It has been at the hands of Christmas parties, cookie baking, gift shopping, family get-togethers, holiday performances, and the like that it has remained imprisoned... postponed, but not forgotten! (It may not be my best work. I'm exhausted! But it's worth writing about.)
I LOVE this Christmasy time of year! In fact, as soon as the masses (but not the retailers) politely let Thanksgiving pass and began to make their Christmas preparations and decorations, I once again began to be in awe of the Yuletide.
What amazes me most?
I am joyfully astonished at how this celebration of Christ's birth inspires so many to conspiracy. It's true! At Christmastime we largely conspire to bring happiness to others. Lay down your pessimistic jargon about commercialization, and whatnot, for a moment and I'll show you what I mean.
Now I'll be the first to admit that I'm the emotional, deeply romantic kind of person who yet clings to belief in fairy-tales but still... how can anyone not be moved to see dads and husbands perched precariously atop ladders hanging Christmas lights if they ask themselves, "Why would they do that?" Is it not it to coax "oohs & ahhs" from my children and yours, as we make, what would otherwise be, all-to-routine evening runs hither & thither? I love they way my children are captured by beautiful light displays, nativities, and decorations. I adore the way ordinary days are transformed by hopeful anticipation and the fact that strangers eagerly assist in my plot to delight my children!
I've heard all the arguments about how Christmas has lost its true meaning and yet I still love that so many of us try so hard to find (or make) gifts to make our loved ones smile (or scream)! We search high and low to find that one thing, for that one person, so that we may be the cause, and the beneficiaries, of their smiles, laughs, and grateful tears. Personally, I don't call that commercialism. I call it LOVE!
I love that we've come together and agreed on this one thing: Life can still be fun and beautiful and exciting! Practicality really isn't everything! We choose to make fun... of life!
Although my children have never been taught to believe in Santa, I am truly tickled by the fact that countless "grown-ups" around the world conspire together to enchant the children that do! My family has fun with the legend, too. I am warmed as I hear tell of the story said to have begotten the fantastical tales.
I love that we choose to crowd our lives with family and social get-togethers. Yes, it makes the season hectic but it speaks, so sweetly, that we've decided to inconvenience ourselves for the ones we love.
I believe that at Christmastime we reach back through the past to grasp meaning from the things of days gone by. We enjoy many of the same songs our great-grandparents sang, tell the same stories, and keep the same traditions.
Mostly, at Christmas we love in a visible way. We conspire to make love seen. And none of us, not one, could do it without the rest of us. It's a grand conspiracy!
So... "Thank you" to the family about six miles south of my home with the animated music & light display. "Thank you" to the cities workers who tie ribbons around street poles. "Thank you" to the news channels for reporting on Santa's midnight run. "Thank you" to the radio stations for the Christmas music. "Thank you" to the churches who keep us grounded in the beautiful reality that is Christmas...
...and, more personally...
"Thank you" to our mothers (Ron's & mine) for the gifts that have brought our children smiles and laughs and fun! "Thank you" to our fathers (Ron's & mine) for the gifts cards and cash! "Thank you" to my aunts who've conspired to delight our daughters! "Thank you" to our family members who've blessed us with a little quality time and hospitality! "Thank you" to our friends for your cards and hospitality!
"Thank you" to all who share in the celebration and love of this season!
And lastly, most importantly, "Thank you" God for your gift of Christ!
...and once again... that's my $0.02!