It occurred to me today as I was walking through Wal-Mart that I seem to be missing something. I took a personal day to keep a doctor’s appointment, and made sure I had time before it to do a little shopping. I strolled around on my way to the items I needed to buy, looking for stocking stuffers. As I made my way through the store I took in the Christmas decorations for sale, candies, all the brightly colored shiny things and hummed along to the Christmas tunes playing over the loudspeaker. Past the electronics and toys, through the holiday tableware and candles I wandered on the way to the baking aisle. That’s when it occurred to me. I have no Christmas spirit this year. I’ve tried to find it, even an ember to breathe to life. I’ve gone to hear a carillon played by the spirit of the bells, gold bird mask and all, and to look through old timey shoppes. I’ve gone to an Advent concert at church, and watched Rudolph and Charlie Brown’s Christmas, as well as various other holiday programs. I listen constantly to the Christmas music playing over the radio and still, it eludes me. I haven’t begun to decorate or bake Christmas cookies, and for me, this is late!
The Christmas spirit isn’t something that I can “get” from the store, the TV, the radio or a book. It’s something that has to happen inside of me, I know it’s in there! Somewhere, down inside of me, there is an ember of Christmas joy waiting for me to breathe it to life. I’m not sure quite what’s covering it up this year. It could be that so very many people that I know are having difficult times with either finances, health, or both, or are missing loved ones an extra bit this year. I have found myself thinking more and more of those relatives who have been gone for many years now, wishing they were here again, in person. Whatever it is, I’ll do my best to sweep it away and get to that ember of joy. I hope that you are all able to find the Joy of Christmas, and Peace.