When you were a kid, what was your favorite Christmas TV special? Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer? The Night the Animals Talked? Frosty the Snowman? Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town?
My favorite was A Charlie Brown Christmas.
Did you know that A Charlie Brown Christmas has been on TV every year since 1965? For most of that time, there was only the TV broadcast. No Amazon. No Netflix. No Hulu. If you missed it, you missed it.
Have you watched it lately? Like the other original Peanuts TV specials, it is actually quite harsh. The amount of bullying that Charlie Brown is subjected to is shocking. I’m not sure how many times the phrase “You Blockhead!” are shouted at him.
But Charles Shultz was trying to make a point: Christmas isn’t necessarily an easy time for people; even kids. There is a harshness to the world and it is felt particularly by those who are trying to reclaim the true meaning of Christmas.
In the end, though, the true meaning of Christmas wins out. Linus shares a rather long passage from Luke and he finishes by saying: “That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.” The characters finally “get it.” They see that Charlie Brown had his priorities right after all.
This is Christmas week. It is one of the holiest weeks of the year on the Christian calendar. It is also the busiest week of the year. And in that competition, the busyness often wins out. Guests are coming. Last minute gifts need to be gotten. You need to hit the grocery store…again.
It is surprisingly easy to forget “what Christmas is all about.”
That’s why I hope you will join us for Christmas Eve worship at 7:00 p.m. It will be a time of re-centering, reclaiming and rejoicing. No TV special can substitute for candlelight, communion, and family time in worship on Christmas Eve.
See you in church,