Another Blessed Lonely Christmas!

Owing to multiple reasons, I schedule my annual vacation round Feb/March. Consequently, this is the 5th Christmas, in a row, that I am going to be away from family. Actually, I have lost all memory of what made Christmas special when I was young. It is sort of sad.

The only thing that is Christmasy about my life these days is listening to Christmas songs. There are some songs that always bring a tear to my eye. One is ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=Adg_JIQzdhs. The other is ‘What Child is This’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oz44GJlSPeo.

Little Drummer Boy is about this little boy standing by the manger Jesus is born at. He loves Jesus so much, but he has nothing to give Him. BIG people come and give Jesus BIG gifts. He is sad that he has noting to give the King. He thinks and thinks what he can give Jesus. Then he realizes that he can play the drum for Jesus. He sweetly asks Jesus, ‘Shall I play for you?’. He plays the drum for Jesus. He plays his BEST for Jesus. His ULTIMATE joy is in seeing… ‘Then Jesus smiles at me… Me and my drum…’. Even writing this makes me tear up, that the Lord is pleased with whatever little I can glorify Him with. He considers it precious. I think I try to put myself in his shoes a little too much. The GOAL of Christmas is not just to have a good time. But to make our Lord ‘smile’ at us and what we do thing Christmas.

‘What Child is this’ makes me tear-up not just because the tune evokes a depth of transcendence and awe and mystery, but because there is a philosophical depth to it too. The song deals with the whole Person of Jesus. His Kingship ‘King of Kings’, His mean estate ‘among ox and lamb’, His Love ‘pleading for sinners’, His crucifixion ‘nail, spear shall pierce through him’. It also talks about ordinate human response ‘Good Christian fear’, ‘Hail, hail the Word made flesh’, ‘Let loving hearts enthrone Him’, ‘Raise, raise a song on high’. The going back and forth between Christ’s Greatness and Human Response brings tears of joy and admiration.

Christmas is BEST when Christ is made the Celebrity that is most admired over and over again… When people tear-up in Michael Jackson concerts, how much more should we tear-up when Christ is the Celebrity??? Well, this applies only to the sensitive mushy ones I guess… 😛

I think lonely Christmases are blessed because being alone around Christmas has given me a greater appreciation for life. It has given me the ability to appreciate life in spite of life being reduced to the bare essentials. It is at such times that I gets to really enjoy God. Loneliness is a very small cost to pay for the opportunity to enjoy and be satisfied in Christ.

It was St. Francis of Assisi who said, “A man who has everything and Christ has everything. A man who has everything but Christ has nothing. A man who has nothing but Christ hasn’t anything less than the man who has everything and Christ’. Understanding this quote of the great Saint at a philosophical level is one thing. Living it at an existential level is a whole another experience. Blessed lonely Christmases give me this priceless experience.

At the end of the day, Christmas is about glorifying God and share my Joy in Christ with people around me. I can always do this whichever part of the world I am at, for the WHOLE world is the Lord’s and the WHOLE world CELEBRATES the King of Kings!

Author: Emmanuel R Paulpeter

I am a writer, spiritual director, life coach and a Church Planter who love all things pop culture, theology and spirituality.

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