If thee is feeling those Christmas-time blues, those “How do I get it all done?” anxieties, remember this:

Christmas is not about the tree, the gifts, the meal, the family visits, the good times, but the humble preparation we must be making for the return of Our Lord, God and Saviour. Our own creche is out on display, and the star over the stable is cosmologically very much like a double-tailed comet, a sign of great occasion in the heavens. Tomorrow evening we will go to church, to lift up our hearts and souls to the Advent of our King, born once to save us all, returning in glory to gather His flock.

“Suddenly the Judge shall come, and the deeds of each shall be laid bare; but with fear do we cry at midnight: Holy, Holy, Holy art Thou, O God, have mercy on us.”

This is from the Russian Orthodox morning prayers, and what better words to remind us of our place before the Lord?

I am encouraging all of thee as I have encouraged my family: Put aside the worldly trappings, the anxiety, the tears, the heartache of this so-called celebration, and bring thyself in humility to that manger, also a throne, and cry before thy King: Lord, have mercy upon us.” No greater gift can thee give Him than this:dec-21-2008-0082 

A broken and contrite spirit.

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