We’ve heard the word unprecedented a lot this year, and now Covid gives an unprecedented Christmas season. It’s a strange world, as the daily news reports the global Covid cases and deaths. They used to give us the good numbers of those that have recovered—now it’s just the bad news.
Five years ago I practised my first Christmas without family, and focused on re-imagining the season. What does Christmas really mean? What is important? For many people doing Christmas has become something to survive, a mixture of tradition and stress. A time to feed the body and starve the soul.
2020 provides a chance to examine traditions and reimagine them. Too date, I have sent more packages, more letters in the mail and learned how to zoom. And I’ve gone for more walks … taking in the festive lights and fresh snow. It has been the season of early Christmas trees and lights. I think there has been a national need to brighten the landscape.
One of my most loved quotes of the season is:
If, as Herod, we fill our lives with things, and again with things; if we consider ourselves so unimportant that we must fill every moment of our lives with action, when will we have the time to make the long, slow journey across the desert as did the Magi? Or sit and watch the stars as did the shepherds? Or brood over the coming of the child as did Mary? For each one of us, there is a desert to travel. A star to discover. And a being within ourselves to bring to life. Anonymous quoted in Simple Abundance, Sara Ban Breathnach,
With current restrictions it may be a very quiet Christmas. But, I still want to embrace this season. Covid is giving many of us the chance to take the time to feel the desert breeze, to gaze at a star, and to ponder the birth of new understanding. The power of Advent is Immanuel, God with us in each season of life, including this Covid one.
The first Christmas was simple, the 2020 Christmas can be as well.
PS The extra time allowed me to finish my second book. It is available via Siretona publishing, https://www.siretona.com/inthebecoming, on Amazon, If you are in southern Mb, it is available for curbside pickup at the Winkler Bible Book Shop.
Stay safe, keep smiling and spread the cheer, not the virus.