We made it, Readers.
Today is Christmas. We’ve waited, counted the days, planned, baked, wrapped, mailed, and done a hundred other things to prepare for this day. Now, it’s finally time to bask in the glory of this wondrous occasion!
But, what IS this occasion? A day off from work? That happens most weekends, and a handful of other days throughout the year. A time to exchanging gifts with family and friends, then? This is closer, but still, no; there are plenty of opportunities for mutual gift exchanges that do not evoke or deserve the magnitude of wonder found at Christmas. Even without the gifts, food, time off, or even family, Christmas would be the most incredible day of the year, and worthy of much celebration.
I could ramble about so many things here, but I fear my words would have little impact. There have been countless sermons preached about Christmas, books written, and lectures presented. The world doesn’t need my take on this event. The world needs the Word itself. Let me share with you the first line, and then a few more, of the greatest story ever told:
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.Holy Bible, NIV
There is a lot to unpack here, but at the heart of it all is these words “a Savior has been born to you.”
A Savior has been born to you.
To quote Linus van Pelt, That’s what Christmas is all about. That is why today is special. Not because of the warm feelings that can come from spending time with friends and family, or the cozy whitewashed winter aesthetic of suburbia, or some myth intended to evoke generosity. But because the truest story of the world began a new and immensely exciting chapter, and this is the day we set apart to celebrate it.
In keeping with usual FLF expectations, I’ll now share the first line of a Christmas book I am currently reading and enjoying. No, this doesn’t really speak to the true meaning of Christmas, but it is set during this season and I am loving it and it has supportable morals, so it’s a hit with me. There is also a Hallmark movie based on this book, and I’m told that it is good and sticks pretty closely to the book.
The First Line
Megan Turner paused to tuck a wayward strand of her curly hair into her bun, covered by her small cap, before grabbing her brass candlestick from a diminutive, hand-carved table.Alexis Stanton, A Timeless Christmas
About the Book
Title: A Timeless Christmas
Author: Alexis Stanton
Genre: Light Science Fiction, Contemporary Clean Romance, Christmas Story
Synopsis: Megan Turner is in love with the past. As a tour guide at a beautiful historic mansion, she tells visitors about its original owner, Charles Whitley. An inventor and businessman in the early 1900s, he rose from poverty to wealth…only to disappear without a trace.
Charles was always intrigued by the future. He just never expected to go there. But when he repairs a mysterious clock he bought on his travels, he’s transported to the twenty-first century, with his home decorated for Christmas and overrun by strangers.
Charles is determined to find a way back to his own era, especially when he learns about what happened after he left. But as Megan introduces him to the wonders of smartphones, pizza, and modern holiday traditions, they both feel a once-in-a-lifetime connection. Could it be that, somewhere in time, they belong together?
First Line Friday is a weekly linkup hosted at Hoarding Books. To participate, share the first line of a book of your choice, add the link to the linkup on the host’s page, and check out what others are reading and sharing!
I hope you have a wonderful day, Readers. I’m sure it will be weird in some ways and familiar in others; still, I wish you goodness, peace, comfort, and joy.
This post is linked up with Faith @ Stories by Firefly for the 12 Days of Christmas blog party. Check out her page for other Christmas-themed posts and links!
Until the next chapter,