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What Difference Does Christmas Make

Many questions we ask about Christmas today were asked at the first Christmas, too.


Here we are, at the very beginning of the Christmas season. Oh, I know the malls and stores have been playing Christmas music and hanging decorations for months now—but we all know better. Now is the actual starting line for Christmas because now is when we can all begin to listen to Christmas music and watch Christmas movies without feeling like weirdos. Or is it just me?

So what are you really looking forward to this Christmas season? What is it that you're eagerly anticipating about this season? Of course, we all have high hopes and dreams for Christmas. We all look forward to some unique, magical moments with family and friends that only Christmastime seemingly brews up for us. We all anticipate moments of real joy, pleasure, and even enchantment coming from parties, dinners, and gifts that only Christmastime can muster. We all envision and hope for our Christmastime to be some Norman Rockwell painting come to life, with simple pleasures of reunion, joy, affirmation, and connection with people we love. That's our wish for this whole Christmas time.

But what inevitably happens? What predictably happens to our wishes and dreams of Christmastime? There are always those moments when the kids melt down and descend into absolute chaos: from the sugar consumed or from the gifts opened revealing underwear and socks. There's always that one family member who always seems to bring up that one topic of conversation that makes everyone feel awkward, angry, or both. There's always that sense of loneliness and loss that sneaks up on us and surprises us—even though we're around lots of people. There's always that sense of disappointment that comes with how Christmastime has actually gone; or how we're not happier, ...

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Steve Luxa is the Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Davis in Davis, California.

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