Always Reason to Celebrate

december1December first–one of my favorite days of the year!  The beginning of the most celebrated month. School programs, cookie exchanges, church festivities, baking, shopping, decorating…busy, busy, busy. It’s become such a big deal that whole books have been written on how to organize yourself, your family, your kitchen and your recipes so you don’t miss any of the fun. There is the slightest possibility that things have gotten out of control.

All while I enjoy some of this busy-ness, which can be fun and contribute to the pleasure of the season, the flurry of activity is not why I love December.

In all honesty, some of my Decembers have been more fun than others. I remember Christmases bearing the shadow of sadness caused by death…those uncomfortable, sometimes seemingly unbearable, “firsts” without a beloved family member. I remember Christmases marred by disappointment,  failing to live up to my expectations. I remember Christmases freakishly different than how they had ever been celebrated before and feeling let down and cheated.

It’s good to have experienced those Christmases.

I’ve also known magical Christmases where every part of the celebration exceeded my expectations…when I’ve been surprised with the perfect present, everyone got along and went out of their way to make the day special for everyone else, people loved their gifts, the meal turned out fit for a Food Network Channel special, and and the house looked like a page from Southern Living. And as if it couldn’t get any better, there was the Christmas Day I had a baby girl. Our nurses enjoyed that, too, as they brought her out to us wearing a Santa hat.

It’s good to have experienced those Christmases.

Christmas holly

And since I’ve lived through the extremes and every point in between in terms of Christmas celebrations, I’ve learned not to fear the imperfect nor to expect joy from circumstance.

It couldn’t be more clear to me that the reason I celebrate never changes. It is not dependent on what may or may not hide under the tree or bake in the oven. Fudge doesn’t set? No problem. Eat it with a spoon. It doesn’t depend on whose chair sits empty at the table. Love is eternal and death doesn’t win. It doesn’t depend on where I am or who I’m with. And this is good news…good news of great joy for all people.

For I have no control over life and death. I have no control how other people choose to feel, think or act. I have not control over many of the circumstances of life. I can’t even consistently control the consistency of my fudge.

But this I know and this is always worth celebrating. I am loved. You are loved. We are forgiven, declared righteous by the blood of the baby whose birth we celebrate. It is the gift given to us by grace, by the undeserved, unmerited favor of our God towards us, his beloved. And this never changes.

baby Jesus

While circumstances and traditions around you may change, our Father says, “I, the LORD, do not change.” (Malachi 3:6)

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light.” (Isaiah 9:2)

And that is why I love December first. I pray your holiday season is filled with blessing.

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About Carol Boley

Carol is a professional writer and speaker, published in Guideposts, Focus on the Family, Arizona Magazine, and Navy Times. She leads workshops and retreats, specializing in family issues, women's interests, and spiritual growth.
This entry was posted in Celebrations, Christian Living, Christmas, Faith, Fathers, Forgivness, Grace, Greatest love ever, Grief, Holiday, Hope, loneliness on holidays, Love, Remembering, traditions, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Always Reason to Celebrate

  1. dgood648 says:

    Great blog, Carol. You’re right! Even death can’t take away the celebration of Christmas as the Babe whose birthday we celebrate has taken away the sting of death through His resurrection.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Linda Carlblom says:

    Excellent thoughts, Carol. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

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