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Christmas on the hard years

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Do you ever feel like Christmas has a tinge of sadness at the edges? Like you’re supposed to be merry, but this out of place melancholy lurks just behind... a melancholy you might try to ignore or hide or camouflage with twinkly lights because it isn’t supposed to be there?

I’ve been finishing up reading through Luke. It’s poignant somehow to be reading of Jesus’ crucifixion by the light of my Christmas tree. We like the story of His birth better- it seems joyful and safe and appropriate for children. But there was a sadness at the edges that isn’t shown in my kids’ cute plastic nativity set with the happy faces. There was Mary giving birth in a dirty stable. There was hateful, power-hungry Herod. And children being murdered. And Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt with little Jesus to save his life. That part of the story seems less picturesque. Put some tasteful white lights on there, quick!

Friend, may I gently suggest that Christmas isn’t just for the good years? If your heart is heavy…