Friday, December 14, 2012

Advent 2012



             The first hymn I learned to sing was a Christmas carol, "Away in a Manger."  I loved to sing this song when I was younger.  I would sing it year 'round.  Then I entered those dreadful middle school years where perspective on everything changes and anything that could be related to childhood was unacceptable.  One Sunday, "Away in a Manger" was one of the hymns for the congregation to sing.  I just stood there, thinking I was way too cool to be singing such a childish song.  I almost felt embarrassed that this song was selected.

Fast forward a bit to leaving home for college, then D.C.  Attitudes on life changed, and especially my attitude for celebrating Christmas.  This was no longer just a holiday, but THE holiday.  It wasn't about being out of school, but about being home and feeling loved.   As my sisters had children, I saw the wonderment of Christmas through their eyes as they learned about the baby Jesus.

As an adult, hearing the message of "Away in a Manger" is the sweetest notion ever.  The whole world revolves around this moment when Jesus was born.  Is there a message for a child here?  Yes.  Is there an even bigger message for adults who at times feel lost?  Absolutely.

In Paul's letter to the Corinthians he says, "When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me."  For this case, I am going to have to say that I have to disagree with Paul.  Let us embrace our childish ways about Christmas.  We should sing all of our favorite Christmas carols with a novelty each year and we should experience the wonder of Christmas in as many childlike ways as possible. 

- Jeb Bush


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