I drove past a house the other day that still had a very sad-looking, deflated Santa figure hanging off the balcony.
Apart from the possibility it might raise awkward questions with children, my first thought was, “Christmas is over! Hurry up and take down your decorations already!”
And just like that the season is done with, onward sweeps a brand new year, and, along with the Christmas tree, we put away our tidings of comfort and joy.
Christmas joy still lingering, I hope
Actually, I hope we don’t. I hope the joy and peace found in the Christmas season is still washing over you today as you get into your work, your schooling, your home life, whatever season you are in.
Last Christmas I gave a little talk at a church Christmas craft event about why Christmas is so joyful.
We find joy in many things at Christmas time – gifts, food carols, time with family and friends, time to stop, relax, pray, be merry and just .
Joy through every day trials
But I also pondered the fact that for many, the season of joy cannot overshadow everyday trials and tribulations. People still get sick at Christmas. People can feel more lonely at Christmas than any other time of year. Tragedy still strikes at Christmas.
How, in the midst of these things, are we supposed to just set them aside and smile because the pastor up the front of the church tells us we should? Or because the song blaring in the shop demands we embrace the “most wonderful time of the year”?
True joy goes beyond Christmas sentimentality
No, the answer is simple but deep. True joy – joy that lasts beyond Christmas and seeps into the everyday – is found by knowing Jesus, who brings us peace with God.
True joy is knowing that “though Satan should buffet, though trials should come”, we are able to say “it is well with my soul.”
Have you continued to remember the joy Jesus brings at Christmas?