Putting Away Christmas

j0382932If you are like we are, your tree is still up, waiting for that opportune block of time when you can do the “purge” and put away all of your Christmas things.  Some folks take longer than others.  Usually, it seems that families with small kids keep their things up longer.  The outdoor lights demand good weather and quality time to remove…and a smidge of resolve.  Let’s face it, they are much more fun to put up than take down.  I will sheepishly admit that one year our lights stayed up long past Easter. 🙂

As you are wrapping precious heirloom ornaments in paper, taking the tape off the Christmas cards, rolling up garland and deciding what to do with your half-wilted poinsettia, think of this:  Are you packing away Christmas in your heart as well?  Is this time of year the only time when you feel full of “good will” toward others, and smile at everyone in the grocery store?  Is this the only time of year when love and generosity overwhelm your heart?  If these things go away when our calendar turns the page to the new year, then we have missed the whole point.  Christmas should give us a forward look.  It is not static.  Christ did not remain a babe, nor should we behave as if Christmas is an end in itself.  That’s how the world looks at it.  It is a day to swap gifts, get what you want, and then it’s off to business as usual.  But it is just the beginning!  Each day, we should be mindful that He was born to die.  As one song asks, “Do you worship the babe in the manger, but reject the Christ of the cross?”  (for full text, go here)  His birth was purposeful, full of foreordained promise.  Let’s keep that promise before us in this new year.

So, muster the determination to tuck away your holiday treasures for another year (okay, maybe keep out the mistletoe 😉 ); but be ever-mindful that the most precious thing about this time we call Christmas cannot be put in a box.

“Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner” 1 Peter 2:7

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