Today I’m moving furniture to make room for the Christmas tree. I have to stick it in little nooks and crannies in other areas of the home. I’m packing up all my mementos from Africa and little knick-knacks in boxes just to have to pull them out next month and put them back. The dust rag is going 100 miles an hour as I prepare the living area for the reds, gold and greens of this festive season.
I love Christmas. I love the memories of great family times, I love hunting for the perfect present; I love the colors, the cold and the excitement that seems to permeate the air. But, what I love most is the reason…dare I say…for the season. Jesus. The One who pulled me from the mucky mire of my not-so-great-existence and set my feet on solid ground. The One who sent the comforter in my days of mourning and taught me to dance again. The One who is my Breaker, Intercessor, Savior and Lover of my Soul. It is, after all, to celebrate His birthday! Some birthday parties are filled with balloons and clowns, pizza and pounds of cake; some are small family gatherings around a cupcake. They are all given in love, all decorated with laughter and all to bring joy.
Yet, as much as I delight in the Holiday season, it’s hard for me to decorate. Many enjoy it; I endure it. Some of my friends post these Martha Stewart signature trees. 10 feet of pearls and poinsettia replete with perfectly matched ornaments. I used to be impulsive, spontaneous and fun like that. Then life got busy and I found it was just easier to have everything in order so when the day was done I could plop down in the middle of a momentary non-chaotic world. I like my stuff the way it is. I like where we’ve placed it and the comfort it brings as we sit and read or watch TV.
But I’m learning to freewheel more. Now a certain peace seems to follow me. Though I’m no longer spontaneous…I have to plan my dinners, trips, meetings, parties and yes, my decorating days…I can anticipate this adventure. It’s like moving into a new house for a month. I probably won’t post a picture of my 6 foot tree crammed with memories of ornaments collected over the years and semi-used tinsel. But it makes me smile and once the assorted & somewhat raggedy Santa’s are put into place I relax a bit. The Nativity scene that remains up during the year seems to snuggle in and though the Christmas pillows don’t match the décor, they are cute and jovial. I take a deep breath. It’s done. It’s celebratory. It is actually beautiful and I’m feeling good.
My little tree & all its glory brings change to my home but it also gives me pleasure to celebrate a Birthday worthy of the One who loves us most.