What's Christmas?

As I sit here, coffee in hand, in a state of reflection on this chilly Christmas night, I can't help but feel overcome with a sense of gratitude and awe towards my almighty God.
Today was filled with so much joy, such laughter, food, family, and friends.

I am thankful for a strange and very unique family that loves each other (and isn't afraid of the occasional Christmas selfie)...


good food... definitely thankful for good food.



Thankful for an incredibly spoiled privileged pooch who ate Christmas dinner with the family...



But look at those eyes; how can you say no to those eyes?



I'm thankful for a loving, accepting Deaf community and the precious woman who made this Christmas ornament for my mama (Mama was pretty crazy about it too)...


Thankful for my home, the place that I live, and all that encompasses...



Thankful for a daddy Who is not afraid of hard work (nor is he ashamed of taking a post-turkey mid-afternoon nap)...



...for parents who love each other and are committed to each other for life (and make a point of showing us kids every chance they get)...

But for me, something has been different about this Christmas.

This Christmas, I have really begun to understand why we celebrate: not for gifts, not for friends, not for a much needed break, not for food, not for a time of selfless, kindhearted behavior towards others. Don't misunderstand me, these are all great things, things that we should participate in and enjoy, but we don't celebrate these things; we celebrate Jesus.

We celebrate the fact that we are not enough, but God that gave us more than enough.
We celebrate that Jesus (The Most High King) humbled himself to become one of us.
We celebrate (those of us who are children of God) that we are not only forgiven from our sinfulness, but we are also justified (meaning that we are no longer guilty, because Jesus has taken our place).
We celebrate that we are no longer waiting the Messiah, the Anointed One, to come.
We celebrate that we are no longer in bondage to the law, because Christ has established a new law: a law of which the foundation is the power of Christ and faith in this power.

As a child of God, I have many many reasons to celebrate.
My joy, this Christmas, should not come from gifts under the tree, from who could or could not come to Christmas dinner, from whether or not it snowed, or, in fact, from any earthly thing. Actually, it should come from One earthly thing. A little tiny baby Who was once sitting on the throne in heaven;
a little baby who decided that He would come to a dirty, hateful world to die for a people who would, in part, reject Him;
a little baby who came from heaven and would one day return to His rightful, glorious position on the throne;
a little baby Who now does sit on the throne and reign with His Father.
Oh glorious day.
And for that, we celebrate.


 Now, if you'll excuse me, I am running low on coffee.

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