It’s been about a week since all the presents have been unwrapped, and you’re finally getting around to cleaning up the last few scraps of wrapping paper, finding a place for boxes, and putting everything you received away. Without fail, there is that one present that you pick up, and though it’s only a week later you say to yourself, “RIGHT! I forgot I got this!” As the weeks drift by, the memory of Christmas presents begin to fade into the background, and suddenly we’re asking ourselves, “who got that for me,” “did I get that, or did someone else?” and “what did I get so-and-so again?” It’s an inevitable consequence of how quickly the Christmas season goes. We’re so busy hopping from one party to another, and making sure that we get everything done, that it all goes by in a blur, and some things slip through the cracks of our memories. There’s just not enough time and attention to remember everything.
Unfortunately, sometimes, our memories allow this to happen with the joy of Jesus’ birth too. We get caught in the January doldrums and the hub-bub of settling into the new year, that suddenly we forget that only a few days prior we were celebrating the birth of Jesus! We forget that along with all the other presents we received, we received the greatest gift we could ever hope for in the birth of the Christ child and his coming to earth to bring peace, hope, and love to a broken humanity. Somehow, even if we don’t realize it, Jesus’ birth gets relegated to the “RIGHT! I forgot I received this” pile, and we just move on with our lives in the new year as though the greatest thing on earth to ever happen hasn’t just occurred.
The new year always brings with it a renewed sense of hope and possibility. There’s a whole new set of 365 days before us to live into all those hopes and goals we have for ourselves. It’s exciting, it’s invigorating. It feels like a reset button has been pushed and we can start again. My hope for all of us for this new year though, is that we don’t let the joy of Christmas, the joy of the Christ child, and his love for us, slip through the cracks of the new year’s hoopla. Remember that unto you a child was born in the city of David. Remember that mere days ago the man who would save us all was born. Remember that you are so loved that God sent Jesus for you and for your salvation. Remember the gift you have received this Christmas season. By all means let go of the things from 2013 that you need to let go of, but don’t let Christ accidentally make it onto that list. Cling to the hope and promise of Christmas, the gift of Christmas, and let it fill your hearts every single day of the new year. After all, it is the last gift you ever want to forget.
Peace it Together & Happy New Year!