Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Follow the Star; Forget the Elf

Over on Serving Pink Lemonade, I discovered our latest Christmas tradition.  (Is it a tradition yet, if you've only done it for a week or so?  You decide.)  I've seen people do the whole, elaborate Elf on the Shelf repertoire.  That's a lot of work to reinforce something that isn't real. 

I was encouraged by Large Families on Purpose, to do whatever I can to keep the meaning of Christmas at the forefront for our family. 

Christmas is about the coming of a Savior who would change all time.  Jesus changed our relationship with God forever.  We are no longer distant, afar off.  Because of Him, we can come boldly to the throne of the Father God.  Jesus' coming revolutionized life for all peoples.  He defied death and righted the wrong that Adam set in motion long before.  So, yes, presents and trees and hot chocolate and cookies are as pale as a black and white rendering held beside the full-color, real-life scenery of an exquisite tropical place. 

When we start our Christmas decorating, we set up the Nativity scene first.  The Blossoms delight in collecting shepherds from Thrift Stores, Wal-mart and the like.  (We own three more shepherds that are not pictured in this 2013 version of our Nativity scene.) 

The wise men are set up afar off, in the eastern direction.  (The Bible outlines three gifts, not necessarily only three wise men.  We imagine an elaborate and ornate caravan coming to find the Christ child.)  And, Jesus is placed in the manger first thing Christmas morning in conjunction with our reading of the Christmas story. 

(You know our Blossoms well if you realize why they are adamant that chickens be in the manger scene.)

I am so thrilled with this new aspect of our season of celebrating.  Blossom2 lovingly crafted an intricate star.  Mommy's job is to remember to move the star to another spot in the house each night.  They scream and squeal in delight when they discover the star sometime the next morning.  Hastily, they journey the wise men to that location. 

On Christmas morning, the star will be over the manger and the wise men will finish their journey at the eastern end of the mantle, symbolizing the wise men coming to the Christ child's side.

It has been such a terrific daily reminder that this season is about Jesus' coming.  And, it vividly illustrates the wise men's earnest seeking of the Christ child.  This new traditiona has been very meaningful for all of us. 

I urge you to construct your traditions around the true meaning of Christmas.