Monday, December 25, 2023

#359 / Merry Christmas

In past years, my Christmas blog postings have often featured pictures of Christmas trees and large piles of Christmas gifts. Getting gifts (and giving them, too, of course) has become, more and more, the focus of our Christmas celebrations.

Gifts are good, of course - both giving them and getting them - but recently (last year, for instance), I have confessed to "feeling a little more religious" about Christmas. While there is a lot of theology that confirms that when we celebrate the birth of Jesus we are, in fact, celebrating the gifts that God has given to us, it is all too easy to forget the "religious" insight that the birth of Jesus was a "gift to the world." It is all too easy to get distracted by the material, as opposed to the "spiritual," nature of our celebrations. 

Since I am still feeling "religious" this year, I decided that the photograph above is appropriate and suitable to the day. Pictured is the Santa Cruz Bible Church. The church is going out of its way to let you know that you are "Welcome"  there - and that's true not only on Christmas, of course, but on every day. The Santa Cruz Bible Church is not the only church in which you're welcome, but not too many churches paint that invitation in such big letters on the outside of the building. 

We are, and I am confident to say so, "Welcome" in this world. Our lives, and our world, are gifts we can celebrate with joy. And so we should. Every day! 

Today, Christmas Day, is a good time to remember how truly blessed and privileged we are to be here, here on Planet Earth, to be alive. To be alive "Now." 

A very joyous and "Merry Christmas" to all those who may read this Christmas message. 


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