It’s Over Too Soon

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.
Romans 5:3-5 (NLT)

December 26 is the most depressing day of the year. For that matter, the afternoon of December 25 doesn’t have much going for it, either.

If Christmas stinks so much, then why am I so sorry to see it go? Well, I have to admit… it does kind of grow on me. Yeah, a lot of it makes me nuts—Congress could outlaw that song about the Christmas Shoes and I wouldn’t shed a single tear—but some of it hooks my heart and I find myself putting away the cynicism and just soaking in the ambience of the season despite myself. For all its petty annoyances, the good parts of Christmas are really good. I may hate shopping and spending tons of cash, but I love giving gifts. Family quirks may irritate, but I love my family. And, for at least a few weeks, people are thinking about how the Son of God came to earth. It’s irresistible.

That’s why the real world feels a little grayer, colder, and emptier when it all wraps up and the ornaments and garland are packed away for another year. The neighborhood seems less friendly without lights hanging from eaves (except, of course, for that one family that always leaves them up until Memorial Day). Maybe it’s harder to get motivated to search for God when plastic replicas of his infant son aren’t in every yard?

God is as real, and as present, in January as he is in December. I can’t depend on a page of the calendar to fill my heart with good tidings of great joy, but time spent with the one who create time itself? That I can do anytime, and he longs for me to do so. Don’t let Christ slip away when Christmas is gone. Seek him, and find him, every day.

I need to feel your presence all year round, God. Make yourself real to me every day.

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