I listened again to The Holly and the Ivy, and this time it really got to me. It brought tears to my eyes.
I don’t want you to think I’m some kind of weeping willie, although it has always been my way not to withhold tears from those to whom tears are due. If you can’t be stirred by the beauty of holiness in Jesus Christ… well, I don’t know.
Tears of joy are a small tribute to pay to Christmas–the day we have chosen, by custom, to celebrate the Incarnation, the word made flesh, our salvation. Those are very large gifts. And along with them, we receive love, family, sweet memories, and hope.
This is an evil age we’re living in, and we need to know that our God has not forgotten us. That’s what the carol was telling me. It took a few hours to sink in.
God is nigh. That is the lesson. He is never farther than a prayer away, and sometimes even closer than that.
My aunt, the last of my family in her generation, is now in a safe place which has already done her lots of good. And just in time for Christmas, too. This was a gift, and I am thankful for it. Not the first gift I have ever received from my God, and surely not the last. So I give thanks for Christmas, for Jesus Christ coming down from heaven and into the world, where I am. And for all the other gifts that go with it.