As I sit here preparing for the holidays, I can't help but stop and think about my family I visited in Haiti last summer. I can't help but wonder what their Christmas looks like. Is it anything like mine? My Christmases are filled with visiting family and friends, decorating the tree, hanging lights up, unwrapping presents, and peeking at all the goodies that Santa left in my stocking.
I highly doubt that in Cercady, Haiti, they celebrate Christmas with trees, Christmas lights, holiday parties, presents, and hoping that Santa will come sliding down their chimney. I really do not know how they celebrate their Christmas, but at times I wish my Christmas looked like theirs. I like to think that the meaning of Christmas has not become lost in translation, but looking at the world today, it has. The world needs to adjust its view of Christmas and learn where the importance lies, not on tangible gifts, but on the great gift above.
Instead of a Christmas tree, they might look to the wooden cross like the one that Christ was nailed to. Instead of Christmas lights, they look to the Light that shines upon them and protects them day to day. Instead of hoping that Santa will come down the chimney and fill their houses with presents, they wait for the coming of Christ. Instead of holiday parties, they have celebrations and delight in the Lord and Savior. Instead of any Christmas desserts, they are filled with the bread of Christ. Instead of holiday cocktails and wine, they remember his blood and drink from their cup to honor him. Instead of presents wrapped with elaborate wrapping paper, they are reminded that the greatest gift was the one that came from a manger. Instead of Christmas carols and holiday songs, they shout from the mountaintop praises of our Savior. Instead of Christmas wish lists, they write lists of prayers, delights, and struggles. Instead of dreaming of gifts that parish and one day rust away, they dream of the gift that lasts an eternity.
My Christmas looks very different to the Christmases that are celebrated across the world. Often times, I wish that my Christmas looked a little simpler like the way Christmas looks in Haiti. I wish that the world could see how different and special Christmas is the way my family in Haiti sees Christmas.
Luke 2: 9-14 of the NIV "An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel praying God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest heaven an on earth peace to those whom his favor rests."