Sunday, 10 December 2017

A Season of Transition


It was late August when the first leaf began to display the faintest tinge of yellow. 

“Look,” my daughter exclaimed in sheer glee, “summer is almost over!”

I knew fall was around the corner, there was a crispness to the morning air that had not been there until then. But that’s not what she was excited for. No, her excitement was for a day much later than autumn, and beyond the days of crispy leaves. Her mind had already focused in on Christmas. 

As the leaves became speckled in oranges, reds, and yellows over the coming weeks her anticipation bloomed into daily musings on the coming Christmas season.

After much negotiations her and I, one of us more than the other, agreed we needed to wait until after Thanksgiving before we turned our thoughts to a new season. 

The turkey had barely been put away (keep in mind, we have our Thanksgiving in October), when she promptly began asking if we could set up the tree. 

*sigh* 

She was relentless.

Finally, the day arrived, sooner than I would have liked, but much too delayed for her, where our living room became an explosion of lights, ribbons, and all things that glitter. She was in her glory dancing around the room! She thoughtfully gave ranking order to each fragile heirloom and decided which needed to be in plain sight, and which could be tucked neatly scattered with wild abandonment into a corner. 

That night both girls asked for a few extra minutes to stay up and “discuss” Christmas. This was a serious matter of the heart that needed addressing before sleep filled their little eyes. 

We are now into advent and the expectancy of the season has only heightened. 

As I sat here listening to her latest theory on how the unfolding of Christmas morning festivities will be carried out, my eyes focused on the nativity scene spread out behind her. 

No doubt, I am aware that we are celebrating the birth of Jesus. The focus at the center of this season is the fact that God sent his Son to save all of humanity and redeem creation. But, perhaps I have forgotten that Christmas is a reminder that we live in a transitional season. What fall is to winter, Christmas is to the second coming of Christ.

In front of us lays a season to celebrate the first coming of Jesus, but the story doesn’t end December 26th when decorations begin to be packed away. This season is a reminder that, like the yellowing of the leaves, there is another season right behind this one. 

From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates. (Matthew 24:32-33)

We have a wedding to be prepared for! Our bridegroom is at the gate awaiting his returning to us for a second time. He is the... 

Wonderful Councelor
Mighty God
Everlasting Father, and
Prince of Peace

...and He is all ours! 

He is waiting in anticipation for his bride, but am I? My daughter’s zealousness has caused me to stop and wonder if I’m making time to get excited for him with childlike anticipation? 

Have I, like her, managed to see what is still to come? Do I make time to allow it to wash over my thoughts?

Or have I fallen into the humdrum of the seasonal festivities? 

Do I share her enthusiasm for the long awaited most glorious season that is yet to come?

What JOY should fill our hearts as we pause to consider who is waiting at the gate for us! 

What JOY to know that whatever this season has to offer in all its splendor, the best season is yet to come. 


Christmas is a reminder, not just of what we have today, but that we live in a time when all of creation awaits the second return of Christ. Let us be reminded of this hope and joy long after the decorations are placed back in their bins. 



Photo credit: alisa anton @ unsplash.com

No comments:

Post a comment