Look Around….It’s Christmas

Over the weekend, my wife and I spent the majority of the time decorating our house for Christmas. Every year we take it up a notch. This year is no different.

Counting the kids’ “little” trees, we have a total of 7 Christmas trees in our house. Each tree is lit up and decorated. The mantle has lights, pine, Christmas stockings and cranberries on it. A new wreath filled with Christmas balls hangs above the fireplace. Our dining room table has a centerpiece. Our house is lined with white lights. We even made a tree out of wooden palette and added multi-colored lights to it. Christmas is literally everywhere in our house.

Unfortunately on Sunday night after spending the weekend setting up all the decorations, I had reached my limit. Our 4 year old daughter Sydney was “helping” with dinner and picked up a bowl of scrambled eggs (even though I told her not to). Of course, she dropped it, the dish broke and eggs went everywhere.

“SYDNEY! STOP TOUCHING THINGS YOU AREN’T SUPPOSED TO!!!” I yelled. Sydney sheepishly put her head down as I continued my rant. By the end, even my other kids knew I meant business.

A few hours later as I looked around our newly decorated my house, it was I who lowered my head sheepishly as I handed over my “Dad of the Year” award. How could I miss it?

Then again, we miss it everyday.

Thousands of years ago on a quiet night in Bethlehem, joy entered the world. Peace entered the world. Hope entered the world. Love entered the world.

From the moment angels appeared to the lowly shepherds and the kings from a far land came bringing gifts, the world has never been the same.

Signs of Christmas are all around us. We just have to open our eyes, see it and believe it.

It’s not easy. In fact many times, Christmas is more often seen with eyes of faith than with our physical eyes. It’s hard to see the joy, peace and hope of Christmas when the dishes of life are crashing down around us. There is always death, sickness, hate, greed and jealousy to steal our attention. It’s almost as if no matter how bright the light of Christmas shines, these distractions shine darker.

We can’t deny the pain of this life. It always with us. It’s often part of us. But when we change our focus, open our eyes of faith and truly see, Christmas is everywhere. It’s in the friend who offers a hug when we need it. It’s in the innocence of a child’s eye. It’s in the voice for the voiceless and the hope for the hopeless. Christmas is quietly surrounding us even when we deny it’s presence. Christmas is not a past or a future, it’s a now…If we are willing to look and see it.

Sydney dropped and cracked a dish but somehow in the process caused her father’s hard heart to crack as well…and just like it’s done for the last 2000 years…Christmas shined through.

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