“The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him.”
It’s about this time of the Christmas Season when I’ve had about enough.
I know, it’s only started. Keep in mind, though, I’ve been working on the Christmas Services since September. We put our tree up at Thanksgiving this year, but for whatever reason, Christ the King Sunday came after Thanksgiving, not before, and now Advent has only just begun and the tree has been out for two weeks.
Then consider the fact that it’s not enough to have Black Friday shopping and Cyber Monday. Now we’ve got “Doorbusters” on Thanksgiving Day, weeklong advertising leading up to it, and the Christmas music pumped through the shopping centers long before the turkey ever gets cooked – it’s a bit of a Christmas overload.
Call me a Scrooge, if you must, but I’m tired of it. And I’m really not a Scrooge at all. **Let me shamelessly plug the Cherokee Community Theater one more time in our production of A Christmas Carol the Musical… Seats are still available, and we have five shows this weekend. Visit www.cherokeect.org for more details.** As I was saying, I’m not really a Scrooge. I do love Christmas. The music, the message, the decorations, the general good spirit that people have during the season. What really turns me off to it all, however, is the busyness.
There’s the noise, the lights, the decorations that often times turn to clutter, the general mayhem and madness that we call Christmas. Then add to that the programs, activities, concerts, etc. that we have to throw in, and Christmas flies right by and you never even notice. Maybe that’s the point.
We have a general rule in our house that goes something like this: NEVER WAKE A SLEEPING BABY. Every parent knows the significance of this rule, and how difficult it is to enforce it especially when there are older children in the home. But a baby resting (and not crying) is a beautiful thing to sleep deprived parents.
So then, what would Mary and Joseph think of the way we celebrate the birth of the Christ-child? Would they usher us out of the stable saying, “Shh! The baby’s sleeping. Take your plastic Rudolf and Perry Como’s Christmas elsewhere.”
One of the ancient carols of the church says,
Let all mortal flesh keep silence, and with fear and trembling stand;
ponder nothing earthly minded, for with blessing in his hand
Christ our God to earth descended, our full homage to demand.
Friends, let me ask you this: When was your last quiet moment this Advent Season? If you can’t remember, then it’s been too long. Are you so busy with all the busy-ness of the season that you have forgotten why He came? He came to bring peace to our hearts, to quiet our souls – but we drown out the silence with noise, noise, noise. Take a moment right now – stop what you are doing – stop reading this – and quiet yourself before the Lord.