I'm itching to get my decorations out. I want those little lights and ornaments on the tree, I want to hang the stockings and see if they can survive being pawed by toddlers for another year. I love all the scents and twinkles and ribbons that make a home feel - well, Christmassy.
It was more like a back-country baby shower with guest list problems.
The only stockings were Joseph and Mary's, and they sure weren't getting chocolates in the toes that morning. There might have been a shepherd's crook propped up against the door, but it was no Christmas tree. And the Christmas gift wasn't wrapped in thick paper and wire-lined ribbon - He was wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.
All the Christmas extras are fun (for me :) ) but they sure aren't Christmas.
Two people looked at me today and told me they were Grinches. "We don't really like any of it," they said, "it's just a hassle."
And they can say that, but they're crazy because they live Christmas like you wouldn't believe.
They're the kind of people who would still be friends with you if you showed up pregnant in the months before your marriage, still claiming to be a virgin.
They're the kind of people you'd want to be lying next to in a field of sheep, talking with and looking up at the stars. (And the kind who would race into town, looking for an angel-announced baby, wild with awe.)
They're the kind of people you'd want to run into if you were stuck on the side of the road with a pregnant wife and a tired donkey and not a single room in sight.
They radiate mercy. They give generously. They travel far to show love.
If you visit them, you might not find yourself leaning up against a fir-decked mantle, sipping mulled wine, listening to Michael Buble's velvet holiday tunes. But you will find yourself welcomed in the truest Christmas way - joyfully, loved, and helped along the way.
Me? I'm still going to hang my decorations (maybe tomorrow!?). And you better believe I'm still going to dance to Christmas music in my kitchen until New Year's Day. But I hope I can be really truly deep-in-the-soul as Christmassy as those glorious Grinches, every day of the year.
Merry Christmas, friends.