(Photo: “Christmas Lights” by kantapat at freedigitalphotos.net)
Who doesn’t love a good Christmas movie? Among my favorites are: The Homecoming, Home Alone, Jingle Bells, It’s A Wonderful Life, and Christmas With The Kranks. Sure, the characters in the story run into some problems, but by the end of two hours, everything is fixed. It would be great if the problems in our lives could be wrapped up as quickly as the movies.
But we live in the real world, not movie-land. The hurdles life throws at us don’t just politely stop because it’s Christmas. Right now, one of our friends is in the hospital dying. Someone else is in debt up to his eyeballs and living somewhere he doesn’t want to live. A cousin is facing her first Christmas after her dad died. A co-worker has the unexpected stress and expense of taking care of a one-year-old relative and has no idea how long it will last. Another friend has an incurable lung condition, and constantly struggles to breathe. Yet another friend wrestles with bipolar disorder.
Even Jesus Christ didn’t have a perfect Christmas. On the very first Christmas – the night he was born – his earthly parents found themselves without lodging, and apparently they didn’t know anyone in town who would let them spend the night. Someone finally had pity on them, and let them sleep in a cold, smelly barn with their animals. And that is where Jesus spent his first night on earth.
Whatever situation you find yourself in this Christmas Eve, know that Jesus loves you personally. He experienced terrible things during his lifetime on earth. He understands what you are going through. Walk with Jesus this Christmas, and you will find peace in your soul, even though this life is far from perfect.