A funeral can definitely get in the way of shopping for the Christmas spirit.
There are times and then there are times. Life has seasons when the Christmas season can’t seem to break through or even have particular relevance. It’s as if everyone is at the mall and you never got the sales flyer. It’s as all are attending Christmas Eve service and you decide to go to bed early.
When death knocks on your Christmas door, you have no choice but to let him in. Sometimes, this uninvited guest stays for many a Christmases. And if you’re fortunate, he finally leaves.
My dad left this earth on a December 5th and it’s over three decades and that day still causes me to remember. Many Christmases have come and gone and in no way does that December funeral get in the way of my holidays today. I guess I am one of the fortunate; or perhaps time does heal all wounds.
Shopping for the Christmas spirit is a journey. It can lead us to a baby. If Wordsworth claims that “Heaven lies about in our infancy” then how much more is Jesus then known as the very “breadth of heaven?”
Jesus’ birth is not intended to mask the pain of missing someone who has left us in December or at any time of the year.
But when he cried and cried that first night of his earthly life, it wasn’t just Mary who couldn’t fathom his identifying with our loss of Eden.
PORTAL TO HEAVEN: No matter which “store” you find yourself in shopping for the true Christmas spirit, may you be blessed enough to turn down one of the aisles and see the baby waiting for you to pick him up and place him to your bosom.
But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone…but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men…And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn…O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?
Hebrews 2:9 (NASB), Philippians 2:7 (NASB), Luke 2:7 (NASB)
1 Corinthians 15:55 (NLT)