5 Reasons I Love Christmas
Christmas has always been my favorite time of year. I listen to holiday music year round and begin my shopping in July. I’ve always joked that my love of Christmas can be blamed on my mother because she sang “Silent Night” to me as a baby…I was born in April. However, with this constant love of Christmas, I’m not sure I’ve ever tried to truly articulate why it brings me so much joy. So, here are my thoughts…
My Daddy and I nearly 30 years ago. (This may be the infamous Griswold tree.)
It’s a sentimental time.
I’m an extremely sentimental person who loves traditions and memories and all that old-fashion stuff. I love spending time with my family during the holidays experiencing all the traditions that have come about in the last few decades. I love sitting around laughing and reminiscing about silly moments and beautiful memories. I love eating all our favorite foods that I would NEVER eat outside of the holidays. I love watching all the movies that have become part of our family experience while quoting our favorite parts. In the midst of such a busy and crazy world, the holidays seem to bring us back together to simpler times with the ones we love and I find no greater joy than sitting on the couch in the dancing firelight just being with those I cherish.
It’s acceptable to like old-fashioned things.
My favorite actor is Gene Kelly. I adore listening to Frank Sinatra. If given the choice I would wear vintage all the time and my dream car is a ’71 Super Sport Camaro. I have always had a bit of an old soul even as a kid. While my classmates were listening to NSYNC, I was listening to Fats Domino’s “Blueberry Hill” and while this may now make me an interesting, well-rounded adult, it made me a bit of a weirdo as a child but to my delight at Christmas old stuff became acceptable again.
Who hasn’t heard Bing Crosby croon “White Christmas” or Judy Garland’s beautiful rendition of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”? I’d say that most people have fond memories of watching old Christmas specials and movies from the 60s, 70s and 80s. Even “old-fashioned” candy is popular. In fact, it seems that putting “old-fashioned” on a package with a little plaid is a great way to sell stuff during the season. I think that old things have more character and there’s a reason why they are considered classics so it’s nice to have the whole world appreciate them for a bit.
The world has ambiance.
Walking around during the holidays is like living in a Thomas Kinkade painting. You have the twinkle of fairy lights, the glow of candles, the festive décor and even joyful music floating about. I love a good themed party and Christmas pretty much provides a theme for the world. Even Daylight Savings Time adds to the ambiance. Everything just feels magical and you can almost believe that anything could happen. Once again, I love that it’s acceptable to decorate in old-fashioned ways which is just so pretty and the fact that glitter is used everywhere is fantastic!
It probably sounds silly but to me the holidays are far more romantic than Valentine’s Day and I blame my feelings on how enchanting and sparkly everything is during winter. You can’t tell me I’m wrong…Haven’t you watched the Hallmark Channel?
British and German troops during the Christmas Truce.
There’s more love and compassion in the world.
If you look at any form of media nowadays you’d be certain that there is no good left in this world. I don’t care if you’re liberal, conservative or somewhere in between. Everyone is being told how awful humanity is and how there’s simply no hope. Yet, at Christmas we seem to find a bit of light in the darkness of our world and that seems to be the story throughout history.
There’s the famous Christmas Truce of World War I when both sides laid down their weapons to show goodwill to each other. Or the stories that come out of the Great Depression where people with nothing came together to share the little they had to go around. Or the British Christmases of World War II, where people celebrated the holidays with absolute strangers underground by singing carols, decorating and even having mock turkey for dinner. There’s something reviving about this time of the year. We give more freely to those in need. We are more willing to show compassion to those around us and we love a little bit harder than usual. If you aren’t religious you may think this is just the magic of Christmas but I know the truth which leads to my last and most favorite thing about Christmas.
Hope was born.
There’s an amazing Point of Grace song called “One King” that beautifully tells of the four kings present in the Christmas story. Yes, FOUR.
“One king held the frankincense. One king held the myrrh. One king held the purest gold. And one king held the hope of the world.”
For centuries, the birth of Christ was prophesied and it brought hope to the people of God. The promised Messiah. Literally, God with us. See, the world seemed pretty dark to those people as well because the darkness isn’t a character flaw of this generation. It’s a character flaw of humanity. God knew that His Son would come to provide hope in a dark world but He also knew it would be for all the world, for all time. As children of God we can see this hope and promise firsthand. We know the darkness cannot win. Not it shouldn’t win. It cannot. I’ve read the end…God wins but that can be easy to forget when Satan is sleeping on your doorstep.
As we go about this holiday season, especially THIS holiday season, let us draw the world to the true Giver of hope. Let’s refresh our hearts to the hope we might have lost during the past year and remind Satan (and ourselves) that we have a “hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11) per the Word of God. Let us use the manger to point others to the gift of the cross and the promises of God that we so desperately need on Christmas Day and throughout our year.