Christmas is a time of celebration.
Bright packages and bows of red, leche flan and halaya, Purefoods Fiesta Ham (the star of the Noche Buena), night carols that make dogs howl, children counting gifts under the tree, all promising we’ll be touched by something extraordinary.
But Christmas is a time of memory as much as celebration.
For some it is a memory of loss, intensified because of the seeming insufficiency. So much promised by friends and family, employers and colleagues, so little given in the rush.
A feeling of inadequacy because you cannot afford to buy gifts even for your children. Christmas is and can be lonely for some.
If we really do think about it, if we really would understand, our memories should find its way back to the infant in the manger a long time ago. We may not be there when it all happened, but memories can also be made up of things our hearts keep.
It is not just remembering His birthday, but remembering the trials and truths that marked His life and, down these many centuries, also mark ours.
We are better because He was the best. Throughout His life He set us the example, He carried the keys to His Father’s house, then threw them to us from the cross. Whatever went before, life only started when His life began.
God may have been the architect, but He sent Christ, His only son, to be the builder of bridges, God to man, people to people.
He showed us in a thousand ways that none of us need fear again, that worry is worth nothing, loneliness is self-indulgence, and death is only a passport to everlasting life.
We know that December 25 may not be the real date when He was born, but what’s important is – at least once a year – we remember the birth of the Greatest Man Who Ever Lived on Earth, Jesus Christ. God’s Son. Our Savior.
For without the birth, there will be no death and resurrection, and no salvation for you and me.
This year, as Christmas makes its round again, resolve to smile inside and out. Carry kindness to its farthest edge, compassion still beyond. In the process you may even come to know yourself as you know Him, and like what you find.
Christmas is more than memory and celebration. It’s more than giving gifts or feelings of inadequacy. It’s more than charity. It’s about a great God revealing how much He longs to be with His created beings for all eternity.