Two days before Christmas, and I was alone.
I stared out the window. The rain fell. The house was empty, except for a small tree. I don’t even know why I put it up. Nobody would see it because nobody would come. There were no presents underneath.
Christmas was not the way it once was. No one waited at the top of the stairs to come down so I could get the perfect picture. No giggling and tearing open presents. I felt sorry for myself—and it felt good. At least for the moment.
I glanced at the nativity set under the tree, wondering what the first Christmas must have been like. The nativity painted a pretty picture: Mary smiling down at her baby, Joseph standing near, and the shepherds kneeling and adoring.
Then I wondered if it was really like that? It might have been cold. They were in a dirty stable, not a suite in the hospital. No balloons welcomed the baby. Only the baying of the animals in the nearby stall. Dirty shepherds came mostly out of curiosity. Mary and Joseph were probably scared. They must have wondered what they were supposed to do next.
I was strangely comforted in my sadness. But then I felt guilty. What did I have to be sad about? Compared to most people in the world, I was blessed. I had a warm home to shelter me from the cold. I had food in the refrigerator, and I had water that ran freely from the tap. How could I not be grateful? Maybe I took so much for granted that I forgot how blessed I was.
In that moment of feeling sorry for myself, I contemplated the wonder of that first Christmas. Jesus came to earth for ME, and I realized I was more than blessed. Although I was alone, I was not alone. Jesus was my Christmas gift. So, I sat quietly and worshipped with praise and thanksgiving, wondering how I could have overlooked the best gift of all.
Are you alone this Christmas season? Jesus beckons and quietly calls your name. Reach out and receive the gift He offers. He will give you peace and will be with you always.
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)