Luke 1:26 NRSV

26In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth…

If you ask someone to share with you their best Christmas memory, odds are good they will share with you a childhood memory of Christmas. Why is that?

I pondered that question within my own soul this week. It’s not that I don’t have great adult Christmas memories, because I do. But there is something magical about Christmas as a child. What is it? I heard someone say one year, “Christmas is for the children.” That’s close, but not quite true.

What is true is Christmas is for “A” Child. His name is Jesus. When we understand Christmas is about the memories we share of God arriving in an unexpected way into our lives, we can’t help but smile and have hope no matter our age or specific circumstances of life.

When we focus on “The Child,” the Spirit of Christmas moves us. It shouts from the mountain top, “God can do anything!” God is fully capable of completely surprising God’s creation because God is the source of our past, our present, and our shared future. Glory be to God!

Of course, I love the music. Of course, I love the gatherings. Of course, I love the decorations and presents. But do you know what I really love? I love knowing that God loves me. As Pastor Sean reminded us, “for God so loved the world…”

Go ahead. Begin saying out loud, “Have a Merry Christmas!” Say it to family. Say it to friends. Say it to coworkers, students, and complete strangers. When you do, you will discover something welling up inside you. You will feel “child-like” wonder again. Hope will grow. God will appear. That’s the future memory we all seek.

Embrace it. Go ahead. Embrace it. I “triple-dog” dare you!

God’s Joy,