I was at the movie theater last week surrounded by kids of all ages. Jason and Brittany (my youngest son), and little Lucy who is three invited me to go and see the new Grinch Movie. It was so much fun to see the movie through her eyes and the giggles and laughter of children seated all around me.
The story of the Grinch is simple.
He hates Christmas.
He devises a plan to rob the joy of Christmas by stealing everything that represents Christmas from the “Who’s” in “Whoville.”
You remember the story…He took away everything, trees, presents, food, every last scrap of tinsel and it didn’t seem to change anything.
The joy remained in the hearts of the “Who’s” in “Whoville.”
His plan failed because in the process of trying to steal Christmas something happened to his heart. He is utterly baffled and yet he is transformed and Christmas is saved enlarging his heart.
He remarks at the end of the movie as he is feasting with his new friends,
I stole Christmas because I thought it would fix something that happened a long time ago.
A tear slipped down my cheek as I heard this statement. Yes, it is a movie, and it is a cartoon for crying out loud! But I realized how true the statement is; I stole Christmas because I thought it would fix something that happened a long time ago.
Christmas can be a painful time for many people, and I have had my struggles of grief this Christmas. I love Christmas! However, this year has a challenging twist as I’ve had to ask God to help me make a choice not to let the sadness and grief overtake the joy.
Losing my Mom makes Christmas much more difficult. Our relationship was complicated at best, and my hope was always that it could be better. Christmas heightens all the emotions because Christmas marks what happened exactly a year ago when we found out she was sick.
Maybe you are reading this right now, and you can’t wait for Christmas to be over because it is a reminder of something that happened just recently or a long time ago. You are hoping it will fix the uncomfortable feelings by blowing past the holidays.
If you could, maybe you’d like to steal everything about Christmas and dump it like the Grinch wanted to so you don’t have to be reminded of something hurtful, painful, or sad.
Just like the story of the Grinch, everything about Christmas could be stripped away, and the simple reminder of what God did for you and me is still there. The little baby in the manger is the miracle that can transform our pain and sorrow into joy. It is the only true fix.
No matter how hard we try to forget, Jesus is Immanuel, which means, “God with us.” He is our comfort and joy as the lyrics state in the Christmas Carol.
Jesus is the only one who can save Christmas for both you and me. He is the only one that can heal our past hurts and fix it so we can experience his peace. He is the only one that can make our hearts bigger to create room for his presence.
I’m with you friend. Sitting in the grief, sadness, and disappointment in front of the manger and believing God will help your heart this Christmas.
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. Luke 2:10,11