Everything that is done in the world is done by hope ~Martin Luther
In just a few short days it will be upon us. Christmas. I find it almost hilarious how fast the holiday comes....and then leaves. No matter how early I start listening to Christmas music. No matter how many nights I enjoy the glow of my Christmas tree (and try to keep my cat out of it). No matter how early the Christmas shopping gets done. No matter how many sugar cookies I frost....or eat. I never seem prepared for the day.
Each year I find that Christmas comes quicker and leaves without a trace of even being here. I find that I somehow "hang up" pieces of my Christmas spirit as each new year dawns. It's almost like I'm consistently outgrowing that tacky wool sweater....and I have to keep on coming up with appropriate substitutes.
Maybe, you say, this is all a part of growing up. Yes, the mystery of Santa never lasted very long for me. We can all thank my logic driven childhood for that (gracious parents). One can only stare at brightly colored lights for so long. Right? And too many cookies would inevitably lead me to diabetic coma. Sure. There is always excess. Maybe that is where childhood memories refuse to connect with adult ones. Maybe Christmas is never "quite as good as....(fill in the year)" because we "excess". Maybe, we've lost hope.
Strip it back. Break it down. Christmas, at the root, is all about a little hope. But, not for the cynic: that associates "hope" with an intellectual breach in reality. I suffer from cynicism at times.
Just a little hope. One bright spot in the year. Where families try to get along. Where friends come home. Where we gather around a table and look at people....and thank God for them. A little hope. That cause us to count blessings. To give from the heart. Sit down excess. Sit down commercialism. Let it rest. A little hope. That causes us to become a little child-like. What's so wrong with that anyways? Hanging up lights and ornaments and stockings and feeling....joy. A little hope. That causes us to parade through the snow singing obnoxious Christmas carols. A little hope. One time a year where we can celebrate peace and sit down the problems of life. If just for a little while.
A little hope. That causes me to remember I have hope. It lives in me.