Day 9- Christmas Cheer
If you think about it, Christmas really is about simplicity. On that night which changed the course of history, there was no fancy birthing suite; no skilled medical team in attendance; no expensive custom-designed cradle or designer newborn outfit with an elaborate "J" monogrammed on the front.
There was just a tiny baby, born in a tiny stable under the stars; born with stable animals in attendance; wrapped in 'swaddling clothes' and then placed in manger.
All of these thoughts came to me this week, as I was keeping my eye out for Christmas decorations and displays to share with you. I happened to find myself in downtown Mobile one day, and I stopped in the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception.
Because the historic church is so beautifully ornate, I expected the Christmas decorations inside to be the same. Instead, I found a simple display of poinsettias at the altar.
And, it kinda' took my breath away.
Because without a potpourri of Christmas clutter to make me go, 'ooh' and 'ahh,' I found myself focusing on the reason we celebrate Christmas in the first place.
He's right there...at the top of the photograph... near the ceiling.
Don't get me wrong. I love Christmas decorations. I love to look at them. I love to put them up. I even love packing them up every year, with the anticipation of getting them out again the next December!
Sometimes, I like to focus on the simplicity of the season. Slow down. Reflect. Enjoy time rather than things. Spend time with family instead of at so many functions. Focus on the Presence rather than the presents.
Think about it. For at least a couple of days this holiday season, just chill. Stop running around fretting that you won't have the perfect holiday if you don't have every trapping that we are programmed to believe is necessary for a wonderful Christmas celebration, Think stable-manger-stars. Think simplicity.
NOW... having said all that, I am off to the Surfing Santa Beach parade this afternoon. Something tells me I may have a few photographs to put into the "Christmas Weird" blog entries in the coming days. Merry, merry... ya'll.