Larry Lilly's Letter Monday December 19, 2005
The very word "Christmas" brings mental images of home to our minds and hoped for or experienced warm memories of home and all that home means.
Charles Dickens wrote, "Happy, happy Christmas that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days; that can recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth; that can transport the sailor and traveler, thousands of miles away, back to his own fireside and his quiet home." The Pickwick Papers.
Over the course of my life I have spent many Christmases away from home, but there has never been one in which I did not wish to be in the home of my dreams. The home of my dreams or of your dreams may not be the actual home where you live. But that is one of the beauties of our life with Jesus, we can work on making our actual home the home of our dreams. Learning to appreciate our actual home is a good step toward making it the home of our dreams.
As I ruminated about Christmas and home, it dawned on me that the very first Christmas paints the stark reality of the main players being away from home in circumstances so sever they were required to spend it in a stable, with shepherds and animals. Certainly this was a let down for the carpenter Joseph and for his young espoused wife, Mary. Much can be conjectured about these two. We do not have to resort to conjecture concerning the main player, The Lord Of Glory, Jesus Christ. Dottie Rambo said "He left the splendor of heaven," to keep His appointment at Bethlehem among other requirements for the purchase of salvation.
Have you ever wondered what Jesus thought about while He lay in the manger? What went through His mind when the Shepherds came to worship, with no gifts but themselves? We do know that Jesus was the only one in the mix who knew the full impact of what was taking place that night of crystal clear heavens lighted by His star which Wise Men from the East saw and followed.
I have never heard a song of Christmas with lyrics that spoke of the joy of being away from home for Christmas. I guess the nearest would be Silver Bells, and being a country boy I could care less about city sidewalks dressed in holiday style or in their regular naked array. The Great Blonde points out that many people love their family and friends enough to endure fully clothed city streets in order to get gifts for said loved ones. Of course these shoppers are usually the fairer sex. Well!
Of course our earthly home can never be just what we wish it to be, but we can trust the Lord to fill it with His presence as we welcome Him, and patiently await the dawning of the new day in heaven without all the pain and heartache. As Sir John Bowring said,
"The happy family is but an earlier heaven."
Larry Lilly Copyright © 2005 Use with credit
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