From Nancy Jean Whitehead...

Dear Friends,
Over the last few weeks I have felt the symptoms of an attack of the Christmas Grinch creeping into my system. I have shared some of my Grinchiness with others and found a lot of them feel a bit the same. I have muttered about commercialism and how Christmas is almost abused by the retail world as they continue to tell us that the only way to have a happy Christmas is to spend more than we can usually afford on lavish gifts that we probably don’t need or even want. I was having a real wallow in Grinchiness!

Then it occurred to me that I was putting a lot of energy into being a Grinch and generally spreading the Grinch message, that I could be using finding other ways to get back to basics with Christ So I have spent some time reflecting on what makes Christmas special and real for me.

The real meaning of Christmas is LOVE. The love of God for this amazing world of ours. A world God loved so much that he sent his Son Jesus to bring us back into that loving relationship that was there at the time of creation. When we look again at the story of Jesus’ birth there is just so much love in it. Mary’s acceptance of the news that she was to be the mother of Jesus; Joseph’s love and acceptance of Mary and his responsibility to help nurture this child; the love and wonder we see in the shepherds and the kings. This was not romantic love as we know it, but a love that is almost greater than we can understand. An all-enveloping, all accepting love that breaks down barriers and boundaries.

There are many things about our present world that some of us don’t like. It was exactly the same 50+ years ago. Many of us miss the big family gatherings we used to have at Christmas, but it is a reality that families are now spread far and wide, so we need to find other ways to be in touch. We need to develop new family Christmas traditions. Rather than wasting energy complaining about the things we don’t like let’s work on the things we do enjoy.

It is time to stop looking back at the past nostalgically. It is time to take off the rose-tinted lenses that make things from the past look so much better and focus on today. Let our Christmas be about love, peace, hope and joy as we remember and celebrate the reason for the season.
A happy and blessed Christmas to you all


PS. Our home has just become a Grinch-free zone!