December 24, 2006 Christmas (Year C)

Isaiah 9:1-6
Luke 2:1-20

  There are many layers to Christmas.
  1) Christmas of the shops. - which is buy, buy, buy  to the music of Jingle Bells. We can see this and say: What is the true Christmas?
  2) Christmas of present - giving.   If one's heart is in the present and it means a really felt "thank you" - this is good, but don't let gift giving  be a mere formality.
  3) Christmas of a special meal. - If this meal is together with family unity, it is of great value.  Is there an estranged member of your family? How about an attempt at reconciliation.
  4) Christmas of the Crib and Christmas Play. These try to tell us what Christmas is really about.
  5) Finally there is the Christmas where God Himself says to each one of us: "I love you."
That is what the Baby in the crib means.: "I, God, love you this much. I became human to show that love. " This gives deep meaning to Jesus' words:"Fear not  I am with you." Usually we do not emphasize prepositions, but in these words of Jesus, the "with" means so much.
This is the basic mystery of the Way Jesus showed us. God himself put aside the glory and majesty of being God, and became truly, truly, 100% human - just like us.
  So he understands our human frailty and gives us strength and comfort. In other words, He loves me as I am.
  Look in your mirror - take a good deep look at yourself - then point to yourself and say;
"God loves me as I am"
That is the message of Christmas - let us share this love with others. 

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