Remember The Child who dwells within us all
I seldom heard the once familiar greeting of “Merry Christmas”, this season, but just the same, our mail boxes were filled and newspapers stuffed, with pounds of brightly colored flyers telling us to buy, buy, buy. And the very same came by our email, and TV, and I wondered when and how the joy and excitement of Christmas became so forgotten and buried.
When was the last time you called out, “Merry Christmas”? Yeah, me, too, it just isn’t done any longer. The Season is no longer ‘merry’ and I’m not talking about those who are economically deprived, for that’s an entirely different ball of wax. I mean the ones who have jobs, family and homes and yet consider the entire month nothing but one great Big Sale, with Christmas even seldom mentioned. Just buy, buy, buy.
Disillusioned I’ve lived through all kinds of Christmases, I bet you have too, and it took me a long time to realize that I am my own problem. The entire Season, as we work it out in our homes, is like a Play, a Drama, and the script, with minor changes, remains the same generation after generation. It only seems to change, for the catch, I find, is that while the Play is the same, we, every few years, are given a different role to perform in that Play.
We liked the ‘child’ role best of all, and every story, TV show, book, magazine etc. does its best to bring again the rapture, joy, surprise that we felt when a child, and it just can’t be done.
Today’s kids are just as enchanted as we once were, and there’s no way that we, in an adult role, can possibly feel the same magic we did when we had the child’s part. We find that the adult roles aren’t as much fun or exciting as that first role. That they’re stressful, a lot of work, and admit it or not, wish for the sheer magic we felt as when we had the child’s part.
My wise philosopher friend B.P. says that Christmas is like one’s life. They both are long stories, with our roles ever-changing, and an adult, with grandchildren would be foolish to envy and try to still play the role of the child. Or vise versa. Nevertheless, the magic and wonder we once felt remains in some secret corner of our heart. The heart of that child we once were.
However, if we are just half-way aware, and watchful, we begin to learn. Slowly and even reluctantly we learn so much we didn’t know was there, much less seek to know. The lessons come unasked for, and, along the way, as the Story progresses we find that the ever-changing roles, if filled lovingly, brings us rewards we could never have dreamed would be ours.
As children we were enchanted, and greedy receivers every step of the way. Listening, writing notes to Santa, ready to believe every move, every word, every scene, and no child should miss any part of that glorious First Act of the Play, for it was good, and what we needed at that time.
But we aren’t children forever, and slowly, and sometimes with difficulty, we learn that there is a giving side to life. Silently, and oft times reluctantly, we accept the new roles, and our children never guess that many a time we put aside our wants, even needs, so that we can give them what they ask ‘Santa’ to bring them. We were there once, and, remembering our joy, we encourage them to experience the magic we once did.
And as my wise friend says, as time flows by, they too will learn with surprise, as we did, that a much greater joy and feeling of contentment comes to us, as we create and dedicate the entire month in remembrance of “The Child”.
Ultimately we find that it is the same Show, Play or Drama, call it what you might, and finally awaken to know that every word spoken or deed filled, are all for The Child. But for The Child who was born on this Day, in a lowly Manger, yet became the Foundation of the entire Christian world.
We knew The Day was for the ‘child’ within each of us, but it can take our entire lifetime to awaken and know it always was and ever will be for The Child who had but One Everlasting, unchanging Role to show us. Love each other and your days will be blessed.
May we all have such a Day, and quietly, but prayerfully live again the day for The Child who dwells within us all.