From the Pastor’s Pen . . .
Our neighbors have some lights.
By “lights” I mean I have to put on sunglasses to drive past them at night.
I mean, their electric bill for December is probably higher than our entire year.
I mean, these people would give Clark Griswold a run for his money.
Is that unkind? If it is, I’m sure this article will get back to them and I’ll end up with toilet paper in the big Spruce in our front yard.
They have their way they like to mark this season. Our kids think it’s beautiful. I think we got our tree up and decorated and that’s about all we’re going to carve out time to do.
Our preference in decor isn’t just the result of having two full-time jobs and three overtime kids, though. Karoline and I tend to prefer simpler things. We don’t want to throw our resources and effort into frills and fashion. We tend to prefer function over form.
That word, “prefer,” is important here. I recognize that there are some folks who will read this article by the light of their own fabulous holiday extravaganza. Cool. Take pride in that. That’s how you express yourself.
Or maybe it’s how you compete with your neighbor.
I don’t tend to think that competition is what this season is about, but sometimes our competitive nature can be difficult to step away from.
I’m aware that I’m wandering a bit with this little epistle. I suppose that puts me in good company, though. After all, during this season, we are celebrating a God who loves us enough to wander into the backwaters of the Roman empire in a time when running water and centralized roads were a brand-new thing. We are celebrating a God who so longs to be near us, wanderers that we are, that the Eternal shrugged off eternity for a generation so that we could, for a moment, touch Forever.
I can’t tell you how to celebrate that. Incarnation, I think, is an exercise in prodigal, extravagant love. It’s God giving us a whole lot more than we need or than is necessary to show us love. It’s God giving up glory to take on the mundane.
So maybe if we take a season to clothe the mundane with glory, that’s okay.
So go for it with your lights. Clothe your home with glory. See if you can outshine the Bristol Motor Speedway.
And this year, remember that glory is choosing to make a home with you.
That, my friends, is really the point.