I’m not ready for Christmas.
I don’t mean that the way you may think. I don’t mean that I don’t have all the gifts bought or the cards sent or the decorations up. I don’t, but that’s not what I’m talking about.
What I mean is that I’m just not quite in the Christmas mood. I’m not upset or angry about anything. It just doesn’t quite feel like the Christmas season yet.
I’m not sure why. It’s not a lack of snow—we didn’t have snow last year, and I had no trouble being ready for Christmas. It’s not that I have a lot to do—there’s always a lot to do in the church before Christmas, and it doesn’t bother me. I don’t know what it is. It just doesn’t feel like Christmas yet to me.
And you know what? That’s okay. I’ve written before about the futility of trying to make yourself feel something you don’t feel. Besides, Christmas is still more than three weeks away. I’ve got time.
You know what always strikes me as odd, though? We have all this big build-up to Christmas every year, and then as soon as it’s December 26, we drop the subject. We may still take a few days off or travel somewhere, but we rarely say anything about Christmas after December 25. We’re on to making plans for New Year’s and New Year’s Eve. It’s like on December 23 or 24 we can’t talk about anything other than Christmas, but then we completely forget about it the second it’s over.
So here’s what I’m going to do. Maybe it’ll work for you, too. I’m going to take my time getting into Christmas. I’ll get there when I get there. If it takes until December 5, or December 10, or December 20, that’s okay. But then, I’m going to try to stay into Christmas on December 26, and January 8, and February 19. I probably won’t keep wishing people a Merry Christmas or singing Christmas songs (although I might). But I will try to keep that feeling of Christmas, that feeling of love and peace and happiness, that feeling of joy at the coming of the Savior, long after December 25 is over.
After all, if Christmas is over on December 25, it never really made a difference. And if there’s one thing I know about Christmas, it’s that it’s supposed to make a difference. The birth of Jesus Christ is not something we’re supposed to build up to and then forget. It’s something that we’re supposed to keep with us every day of our lives.