December has held true to its expectations this year. When I think of this month, I can feel the cold and cloudy days. The sun rarely shines in my mental image of December. It is almost as if the year realizes that its age is showing, and it avoids any bright light that could shine on its plainness and point out the barren places.
Somehow all that deep green foliage that miraculously became those gloriously colored leaves in the fall is now all gone. Fallen and blown away, leaving behind twisted sticks and branches that overlap and intertwine but have nothing to hold on to. The brown grass and rusty colored sage cover the lawns and fields and show few signs of life. Even the evergreens droop in the cold and the heaviness of the dark.
The days wake up late and are snuffed out incredibly early in the afternoon. The sun becomes distant even when the clouds are parted. The cold surrounds and envelopes you, and creeps into your bones and your being.
In the cycle of nature’s year, this is definitely the low point. I cannot imagine a world where this is the sum total of all there ever is.
And so it makes perfect sense to me that Christmas comes at this time. Even though Jesus’s birth may not have historically occurred in December, that’s when I need that good news the most. God, through His Son’s birth, brings light into this dark world. He looks at the bare bones of our existence, and shows His mercy to a world dark and drear.
God brought His Son into a simple world in a lowly place. He placed a bright star in the sky to show the way to a true Light for our lives. His Love, as always, comes when we need it most.
Since that time, this dull time of year holds a shimmer and a glow that covers the dullness of the world around us. The light from candles and bulbs, as well as from smiles and open hearts, guides our way in the darkest of days. Enduring this time of year is possible because of our memories and our hopes.
Led by the light of a start sweetly gleaming
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.
Merry Christmas, one and all. The days are already getting longer and God’s love surrounds and warm our souls.
All is calm,
All is bright.