Christmas Day. Where’s the Beef?

Today we celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, the God-man, our Savior, the Word-made-flesh. It is a mystery that cannot be explained; one can only stand before it in awe or denial. It is the great provocation only surpassed by His death. This day points us to our salvation and everlasting rest, the satisfaction of our heart residing in the Prince of Peace.

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It is, therefore, “the most wonderful time of the year” and “the hap-happiest season of all.” And yet one may say…

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Please pardon my irreverence, especially on one of the most holy days of the year. Does this not, however, express what many people feel? Does it not express what many Catholics would not in actuality be able to answer? It’s been a while since I’ve read any news articles or statistics on this, but the “holiday” season also has a reputation for being the loneliest time of year, for being the saddest time of year. So where’s the beef?

In antiphon 3 of morning prayer this day, we proclaim, “A little child is born for us today; little and yet called the mighty God, alleluia.” For the lonely and those weighed by bleak suffocating sorrow, I can see this not meaning a whole heck of a lot. Where is their comfort and joy?

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Christ is born! Glorify Him! But today we do not simply celebrate His historical birth 2,000 years ago. The mystery is made present. Today and every day He desires to be born in our hearts. That when He comes again, it is not just we meeting Him, but also He in us meeting Himself. If today I remember that our salvation is born, I must also remember that I am a co-worker with Him in salvation. Today I do not simply remember that God is incarnate, but that He is mystically incarnated in me. So where’s the beef of this Christmas Good News? He is in me. The Light entered the darkness. If the Light is in us are we not also called to do the same?

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