A Christian’s heavenly journey with his feet on the ground. Treasures shared that are discovered along the way.
Please note that this blog has now moved to: "Senior Eagle walking with Father"

Monday, December 24, 2007

Anticipation on Christmas Eve

Long ago, when I was a boy, Christmas had a magical quality. I could hardly contain my excitement as the big day drew near. On Christmas Eve we hung the paper chains we had so carefully made and decorated our little artificial tree. As a special treat we were allowed to stay up late and listen to a Disney soundtrack on the wireless, followed by carols from King's College, Cambridge. Once in bed I was ages going off and kept glancing at the pillowcase at the foot of the bed, wondering when Father Christmas was going to fill it with toys. There was something missing though.

I had no sense of Christmas coming this season, until last week, when my wife and I visited a nearby 16th century mansion. It caught us by surprise. As we entered the great hall, we were greeted and handed a song sheet. A large evergreen festive garland was suspended from the rafters and a blazing log fire provided welcome warmth. The place was soon filled to capacity as we sang all the old familiar carols. It was an enjoyable unexpected experience. I could even imagine that we were back in those olden times .... or could I? I was reminded that in 1647 the English Parliament banned Christmas, as Oliver Cromwell said the revelling and making merry was pagan. Thankfully it was reinstated thirteen years later, but I wonder what he would have made of the way Christmas is remembered today? Maybe he thought there was something missing. Perhaps he had a point?

This afternoon we will take our two grandchildren to a crib service in their local church. We can't wait to see their eager faces and catch something of their excitement. We will be ready for surprises though. Like last year when we were with our London granddaughters at a similar service. There was an attempt to make the presentation child-friendly, with two youngsters dressed as a spotted cow - it was a stable! Our youngest wasn't to be put off and in tears asked, "But where is Jesus?" These little ones are our future and we pray and believe they will come to know Jesus personally.

We look forward to being with our family tomorrow and sharing in the festivities. At the same time we will be aware that the day is a celebration of Jesus's birthday. Not a baby in a crib, but alive and 'with us' now in the Spirit - there's nothing missing. However, the anticipation remains, as we look forward to when Jesus comes again as King. Whenever that is, we want to be sure that we are ready.

Christmas Blessings

"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"—which means, "God with us." Matthew 1:23 New International Version


  1. Anonymous said...

    Merry Christmas, I stumbled upon your site yesterday and your tender words have resonated with me throughout the day. Therefore, I just wanted to say thank you for sharing your thoughts and scriptures-it warmed my heart to know that there is a Godly man who loves the Lord and his wife and family. Thank you, from Portland, OR.