‘Twas the night before Christmas
And all through the house
Not a creature was stirring
Except for a mouse,
and a goat,
and some sheep.
Definitely some shepherds and angels.
Don’t forget about a nervous Joseph
and a young mother named Mary in labor!
Christmas Eve, the “night before,” has always been a magical time for my family. As a kid we opened Christmas Pjs and slept by the Christmas tree. Today, sleeping by the tree on the hard floor does not sound appealing at all! We put out cookies and milk, understanding the truth about Santa but enjoying the tradition none the less.
Today, nostalgia still fills the air. Cookies and pies are being made as we speak. Christmas Pjs will be opened. Dinner by candlelight will be had. Our kids won’t sleep well, and mom and dad will be busy attempting to put together the toys that say, “Assembly required.”
Why do all this? Why continue to stress over traditions making sure everything looks and feels just right when it is really about a baby?
I think there is is something special about a father working diligently to surprise his children. Something special about a father creating moments and opportunities for his children to look back on with fondness. Something special about a father giving good gifts to his children, just because! Let’s be honest...the kids weren’t always on the “nice” list this year! And still we pass the presents out as if they were angels all year! Hopefully, we can do all this without going into debt, but even if we do, it is out of great love and a desire to create a moment and a memory that may last a lifetime.
In the same same manner I feel our Father treats us, His children. He creates moments and memories that may very well last an eternity. He lavishes gifts on us as if we were on the ‘nice’ list all year! We have a Father who loves to surprise us and provide for us when we need it the most and deserve it the least.
So maybe Christmas is more about the stockings and gifts, traditions and memories than we first thought. We are made in the likeness of Christ mirroring His love through our love we give to our own. Through gift giving we represent His great Gift to us. In our receiving of gifts we didn’t earn or deserve we are teaching our kids how to receive His free Gift for us.
So whether you are giving or receiving gifts this Christmas; making cookies and memories, enjoy it all. Enjoy the look on that special someone’s face as they open the gift you gave! Enjoy the tradition and holiday fun! Through it all this season, I believe our Father is looking down on us smiling. He is watching with enjoyment as His children are perhaps acting more like Him on this day than any other!
Merry Christmas Eve!