I don’t know about you, but I’m tired. It’s September 2, 2015 and I’m tired…because I can see into the future, which REALLY makes me tired. I can see that we have another 14 months of political advertisements, attacks and absolute insanity before we reach the 2016 elections. Sometimes, it seems to me other countries may have a better process for elections: declarations to run, a six week campaign and elections. Can you imagine what it would be like having to listen to the rhetoric only once or twice instead of a thousand times? Yeah, me too.

We’re about to enter another season of endless advertisements, enticements and absolute insanity. Yes, I’m talking about Christmas and the earlier we get to it the …well, it must make it better. Or else, why would we start before Thanksgiving? Halloween? Labor Day? Again, some other traditions seem to have a better idea. Instead of making Christmas a day about receiving gifts, it is a day to worship God and be joyful for the gift that arrived on that night so long ago. Then, with the “reason for the season” properly celebrated, the Twelve Days of Christmas begins, ending on Epiphany. Epiphany is the traditional day (night) that the Magi arrive in Bethlehem bearing…gifts. In many places, that twelfth day is the day families and friends give gifts to each other having already celebrated the birth of Jesus as a gift from God, unpurchased, unexpected and unbeatable. I find that tradition appealing. Concentrating of the birth of Jesus and then later enjoying the giving of gifts to others.

Before we get too carried away with anticipation about the mid-winter solstice and all the approaching holidays, let’s remember that life, routine daily life, goes on for all of us. Yet, we need celebrations to keep us grounded and hopeful for the future. Little celebrations happen every week, on the first day of each one. It’s when we come together to remember the gift of God in the person of Jesus and celebrate the unconditional love represented through as well as embodied in him. We are loved, period: no conditions, no exceptions, and no limits. That’s worth celebrating more than one day a year. As we settle into the routine of the fall church schedule of children’s and youth activities after Sunday worship and adult faith development on Wednesday evenings, make worship, priority one. Let’s celebrate!

See you Sunday!
Until then – peace