Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
It’s only a few days until Christmas now and the Christmas spirit is abroad in the land…
When I was 10 years old, I knew what that was, but as I get older and older, I’m not so sure. I used to think it was a kind of joy, mixed with anticipation and general excitement, but as an adult all of that faded. Oh, I look forward to the day simply because it involves being with loved ones and having a “fancy” meal, not because it was Christmas. If anything, for my adult self, Christmas day really meant that I could relax a bit. The events, shopping and rush was finally over!
To be truthful, neither my 10-year-old view of “that Christmas feeling” or my parental view of “whew, survived” is really the right way to view the situation, as I’ve come to understand now that the kids are grown. Now, I’ve come to realize that there really shouldn’t be any special “feeling” at all, for the ideals that culture associates with Christmas are really the attitudes that Christ has made possible for His followers 365 days a year.
Compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness and an over-riding love are things we should be showing all the time. These are not just ideals or goals, they are imperatives that are based upon unselfishness as modeled by the life of Jesus Christ, who demonstrated these attributes in everything that He did and said. It is certainly true that my behavior (and yours) doesn’t always match that of our Lord, but as we grow in our faith and as we focus our lives on Christ, we will make progress in this life. If nothing else, these attitudes will enable each of us to show those around us the best of the Christmas season, all year long.