Growing up, our family would always travel out of town to visit my Grandmother over Christmas. On one or two rare occasions, we even spent Christmas Eve and Christmas day at her place. One memory that stands out for me is trying to sleep Christmas Eve on her couch in the living room. I don't know if I had difficulty sleeping because I was excited, or if the couch was uncomfortable, or if I was uncomfortable because it was a different house. Nonetheless, I had my little AM/FM radio to pass the time with and was enjoying the Christmas music on the local radio stations. (Yes, the AM/FM radio... the Walkman... gone are the days!) Once an hour, or so, there were special news breaks. But these weren't regular news breaks -- they were based at the time of the birth of Jesus. There were reports about long lines of people heading into Bethlehem for the census (a cart had a broken wheel, it really snarled traffic!), a star shining extra bright, and so on and so forth.
I was fascinated by these radio spots. They were probably part of the reason why I couldn't sleep -- I didn't want to miss the next update! They built the anticipation of Christmas day, and created a sense of excitement and wonder about what was happening.
As we grow older, I think our excitement for Christmas is, unfortunately, replaced by a sense of relief: once the 25th comes, we no longer have to worry about Christmas parties, shopping and wrapping gifts.
What a sad attitude!
On this Holy Night, the Word became incarnate in flesh! What an incredible thought: that out of His love for us, God sent His only Son! The Creator came to save the creature.
Something so special, something beyond what we can ever fully comprehend, happened that night.
That's far more exciting than any creative radio spot.
That's awe inspiring!
Have a holy Christmas and may the Christ child fill you with the same sense of joy and wonder of that first Christmas.