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Holding It All Together-The Last Christmas

By Amy McCollom
I realized today, especially today, that this Christmas will be the last of it’s kind for me. As I drove to the bank, I had to pause a few times on Main Street as parents hustled little ones across the busy street, and a man dressed in a reindeer costume helped direct a busy crowd through the traffic. Santa Claus had come to town and, having no little ones any more, I had not kept tabs on his arrival in our neck of the woods.

The laughter, rosy cheeked faces, running little feet, and excitement of the activity made me feel like I was missing out on something. A lump came up in my throat, the kind you get before you want to cry, and I was surprised by emotions that came out of nowhere. What is happening to me?

Without realizing it, I got old, and transitioned from one stage of life into another. I know…everybody says middle-50’s aren’t old, but who am I kidding? I don’t have the energy I used to have, nor the eyesight or hearing. I can sprain my wrist just lifting a full cup of tea. 

As much as I would love to take a child by the hand and run across the street to meet Santa Claus, I know I would be out of breath and sitting on a bench if I tried. Those days are over for me, but they were fantastic.

In just a few days, I will spend one last Christmas with the remaining children I have at home, then they will be all grown up too. I plan to cherish this last Christmas with them and not rush through it. I want to make memories that will stick in my mind, and be there as a comfort to me. Life moves so quickly, make sure to stop and enjoy it instead of just taking pictures of it.

The truth is we never know when our last Christmas with someone will be, and that is why it is important to make every Christmas as personal and memorable as possible. That doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune or make everything perfect. Some of my fondest memories are of funny moments, small gifts, and just singing together. 

Christmas is a time for sharing love, caring for one another, good food, and remembering what we are celebrating. Without Jesus in the center, we aren’t really celebrating Christmas at all, are we? We can’t expect to have an enjoyable Christmas if we don’t put Christ as the focal point of the whole holiday. It’s Jesus’s birthday that we are celebrating, and all that He stands for!

I know a lot of people who are in different stages right now too, and maybe this Christmas is hard for you because you are missing someone, or your situation in life has changed. I urge you, though, to still celebrate Christmas with a new heart and purpose. 

Do not let your circumstances or what has happened in your life determine how you feel about Christmas. It is not about us, it is about Him. If we seek Him, we will find Him, just as the angels foretold long ago. 

If you will, do this one favor for me on Christmas Eve: Gather your family together and sing Oh Holy Night . It will only take a few minutes, but will make a difference in the atmosphere of your home. I’ve included the lyrics, but you can find the song on YouTube. 

O Holy Night

O Holy Night!

The stars are brightly 

shining

It is the night of the dear 

Savior’s birth!

Long lay the world in 

sin and error pining

Till he appear’d and the 

soul felt its worth.

A thrill of hope the 

weary soul rejoices

For yonder breaks a 

new and glorious morn!

Led by the light of Faith 

serenely beaming

With glowing hearts by 

His cradle we stand

So led by light of a star 

sweetly gleaming

Here come the wise men 

from Orient land

The King of Kings lay 

thus in lowly manger

In all our trials born to 

be our friend

Truly He taught us to 

love one another

His law is love and His 

gospel is peace

Chains shall He break 

for the slave is our 

brother

And in His name all op

pression shall cease

Sweet hymns of joy in 

grateful chorus raise 

we,

Let all within us praise 

His holy name

Fall on your knees

Oh hear the angel 

voices

Oh night divine

Oh night when Christ 

was born

Oh night divine

Oh night divine

Merry Christmas every

one!

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