Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A Charlie Brown Christmas

In keeping with tradition I watched Charlie Brown Christmas last week. It is for me as I'm sure it is for many a nostalgic emblem of childhood. Typically when I watch this movie I feel a sense of comfort when Linus gives his famed speech about the incarnation. My heart smiles and there is a peace that accompanies his voice when telling the story of the birth of Christ. This year however, things were a little different. I found myself relating much more to Charlie Brown. I'd recognized earlier in the season that I wasn't really excited about Christmas this year. I couldn't decide if it was because it was another holiday spent away from family or if the cause was something deeper. At church the sermons have been going through the advent season and we've been looking at Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. I expected with the talk of Christmas, the decorations, the cooler weather and the carols I would quickly be swept up in the Christmas spirit, but to my dismay it never came. When I watched Charlie Brown I realized that I needed to be reminded, just like he did, that Christ is Christmas. I was still unsure about the cause of my lack of enthusiasm. For Charlie it was that Christmas was commercialized and the focus was on gifts but after some contemplation I discovered that I had not replaced the meaning of Christmas with anything, I just failed to appreciate it. My lack of zeal was because I was looking inward. I was attempting to make the "things of Christmas" be Christmas. I wanted it to be an emotional experience. It's bothersome to me that even during all of the choir rehearsals when I repeatedly sang the chorus, "Jesus is the reason for the season" I still didn't allow that truth to sink in. But I'm humbled and grateful that the Lord found a way to draw my heart back, to gently remind me of the sacrificial love He showed me by becoming man and allowing me to have an intimate relationship with my Creator.

"For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this."
~Isaiah 9:6-7

No comments: