Tonight as I flipped through the television channels, I happened to catch the original cartoon of How The Grinch Stole Christmas. It was cute and funny, just as I'd remembered, and the message was still the same--that Christmas would still come without any presents. And then we learn how the Grinch's heart grew three sizes that day (it was two sizes too small to begin with) and he returns the presents he'd stolen and even carves the roast beast.
It made me wonder what a Christmas without presents would be like. Would we still think of it as Christmas? Would our hearts shrink to the size of the Grinch's, or would we allow them to also grow three sizes? Christmas is SO commercial--lists of wants and decorations going up as early as September...it makes me cranky each year.
But what if we had a Christmas where we did something odd like read and discussed the Biblical Christmas story, where we didn't worry about getting someone the perfect present that would be forgotten about in two weeks, or really pondered the meaning of what it means to have Jesus come into our lives unexpectedly? What would that kind of Christmas be like? And so that is the challenge this year--how can we focus more on the true meaning and less on the meanings we have come to attribute to it?
Perhaps we should become Grinches ourselves and take away the trees and decorations and presents and see what happens. Would Christmas still come?