Friday, December 21, 2007

Christmas: It's about PRESENCE not PRESENTS

It's been a busy year, and the lead up to Christmas has been no different, particularly with all the Christmas shopping to be done. This year it's struck me particularly forcefully that we don't "get" Christmas anymore.

There is so much busyness around the event of Christmas that we have forgotten what it is all really about. We spend hours in the shops buying tons of presents, out of a sense of obligation because "it's that time of year", and it's expected. If you ask the average 5 y.o. what Christmas is all 99% will reply something to do with getting presents.

It really strikes me that we've got it all wrong! Christmas isn't about PRESENTS it's about PRESENCE. I was reading Matthew's account of the birth of Jesus this morning, and there is a lovely couple of verses (where he quotes Isa 7:14) that read as follows:

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel—which means, "God with us."

There it is! This is what Christmas is really about. It's about Jesus who is called Immanuel, which means "God WITH us". God's PRESENCE with us, not PRESENTS.

God bless,

No comments: