A Different Christmas – Diva Christmas 2020

Editor’s Note: This is a guest story by our friend here at Devotional Diva, June Titus! June has pulled out a great message this year for Christmas.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

John 10:10

Christmas this year may be a little different from what we are used to. With “social distancing,” limited air travel, and general disruption in our country, we may have to re-invent Christmas. Churches have no plans for the usual dramas and musical programs, and the cities have canceled their parades and iconic festivities. It’s like Christmas has been stolen from us. But it may prove to be a new life for us—an abundant life.

It reminds me of the first Christmas after I was married more than sixty years ago. My new husband was a poor college student. He went to classes full time and worked part time to pay the seventy-five dollar/month rent and put food on the table. I had only started a job and had not gotten my first paycheck. We rented a third-floor walk-up furnished attic apartment close to the university and the hospital where we both worked. But we lived five-hundred miles from my home and two hours away from his home in the mountains. And we had no automobile to go anywhere. If we couldn’t walk or take a bus, we were stuck. We had to re-invent our Christmas.

What to do? We paid a dollar for a “Charlie Brown” table-top tree and fifty cents for a sprig of mistletoe. I decorated the tree with paper snowflakes and rolled-up aluminum foil balls, and hung them on the tree with paper clips. I made a cardboard star and covered it with foil for the top of the tree. It was not a great tree, but it was ours. I don’t recall gifts, but he may have given me money to buy something for myself, and perhaps I bought him the usual plaid shirt at Sears and Roebuck. We didn’t have a car at the time, so for Christmas weekend we hitched a ride with a friend to go two hours away to his parents’ home in the mountains.

We didn’t have a church home at the time, although we had visited around the city for one we liked. We went to church at the little mountain church where my father-in-law was pastor, visited with his brother and visited neighbors I had not met before. And we ate a lot!

It was a new life.

But isn’t that what Christmas is all about? Isn’t it supposed to be about a fresh start? When Jesus came, He came to give us a new life—to redeem us. The cute baby in the manger evokes sentimental emotions. Angels astonished the simple shepherds with their brightness, and their magnificent message that evoked glory and praise to God. But… The agony of man of sorrows on the Cross is the real Christmas. It was there He took our place and suffered in one horrible day all the consequences of our sins, and died. But more…He rose from the dead. Alive! And we, too, shall live because of Christmas. New. Fresh.

What’s more, He will come again! A better Christmas.

“Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!

Revelation 22: 20

June Titus is a retired nurse and poet and mother and grandmother, living with her husband in southern Georgia. Now in her eighties, she remains active in her local church. Among other church responsibilities, she teaches a Sunday school class of her peers. She writes a weekly blog on Facebook, entitled “Monday Musings.” Prior to moving to Georgia, she was a regular contributor to “The Watauga Democrat” newspaper, and “all About Women,’ a monthly magazine, both in Boone, North Carolina.