One's feelings about Christmas sure change through the years.. The giddy anticipation of my childhood Christmases has matured into a genuine feeling of — and I hope this isn't too hokey — goodwill and seeing the best in people during the season. Christmas has grown from being about what I'm getting, to asking myself, "what am I giving?"
I realize this is no revelation, but the celebration of the birth of Christ is centered too much around shopping and things and self-satisfaction, I'm reminded of Linus of Peanuts fame when he quotes Luke chapter 2 and gives us the "true meaning" of Christmas.
I get it now as I go to worship during this holy season and see the sights and hear the sounds of Christmas. It's not about me, or what I'll get or what shiny thing I'll buy for someone. It's about God and the gift he gave to you and me. It's about the miraculous birth of a boy who would be savior to a world of sinners. It's about faith, and love, and hope, and the promise of heaven.
It's because of Linus' monologue that music from "A Charlie Brown Christmas" stirs some deep feelings in me. When Schroeder's starts banging away at that Fisher Price piano, I know it's really Christmastime.
I was 9 when Linus first talked of the virgin birth and when Charlie Brown brought home a scrawny tree that would come to represent the Charlie Browns of the world and how much they can shine if shown a little kindness. I have watched the half-hour show every season since — not so much for tradition's sake, but for my own sake.
I hope your holiday season is full of joy and wonder, and, mostly, love. Merry Christmas.
Writer James Mulcahy
spent 35 years as a newspaper journalist at small and large papers. He is currently a freelance photographer/writer/graphics designer, and he drives a school bus.