and to us a son is given
and the government will be on his shoulders’. (Isaiah 9:6).
What does Christmas mean to you?
I’m a Christian. Been one now, for many years. I know the right answer to this question. But, confronted by the melee of Christmas, I’m finding myself caught up and carried along – in the wrong direction.
There’s so much to do. Groceries and presents to buy – but also deadlines to meet and bills to pay.
It’s like buying Delia’s ready-mix Christmas cake. If I can just collect together all the right ingredients in all the right quantities, then I’ll get TV perfection.
Have I bought enough? Or far too much? It looks so small – but it’s still more than we can afford.
Will they like it? Will they like me?
Get it ‘right’.
Make it ‘perfect’.
Is this Christmas? A glittering, frenzied performance.
My gifts, my sacrifice, my governance on my shoulders? Is this my hope?
If this is it, I want no part of it. It’s glossy, but it’s cold. And it’s just me, opening my presents.
So I go back to Isaiah.
To the child, born for us.
To the son, given to us.
To the government that is upon his shoulders.
I can’t share if I’m on my own.
I can’t receive, if my hands are already full.
I can’t let him carry me, if I won’t put down my load.
It’s counter-intuitive. But it’s real hope.
A free gift, not a scam.
A changed life, not just a season.
A child, who carries the world on His shoulders.
That’s Christmas Emma. That’s Jesus.