It’s called Christmas letdown, Christmas Blues. That feeling a day or two after Christmas when all the hustle and bustle and anticipation is over. Gifts have all been opened, and some have been returned or exchanged. Some are marked for “re-gifting” next year (and hoping you don’t give it to the same person who gave it to you).
Wrapping paper that had been so carefully placed on boxes has now been shredded by the recipient in the anticipation of finding the gift inside. Bows have been collected and put away for next year to adorn more packages. And those amazing gift bags have been stacked inside each other so you’ll have to do even less actual wrapping next year.
Store shelves have been stripped clean of ornaments and wrapping paper and other Christmas items that went on sale for 60-70% off….stocking up to do it again next year. You had to go shopping the day after so you could buy things on sale that you didn’t really need, but were a great deal.
Your refrigerator is full of leftovers from Christmas dinner and you’re wondering how many recipes for leftover turkey you can find. There are cookies everywhere because you just had to make one more batch, just in case…. (Ok, I confess…..the cookies are at my house!)
That beautiful tree you were so excited about when you decorated it suddenly looks tired and ordinary…and you’re ready to take it down and put it away and be done with all of this. Ready to go back to “normal”. (This is NOT me!)
The mystery and magic of Christmas is suddenly gone…in one day.
At least for a lot of adults it is. The children are usually a different matter…they’re still excited over their new gifts, and still enjoying the magic and joy of Christmas.
So what happened to us? Have we gotten so involved in the details that we think are involved in celebrating Christmas that we’ve missed the whole meaning? Are we so anxious to get on with our routine everyday lives again that we hurry to put everything away when we should be reflecting on the beauty and wonder of the season…instead of only allowing it to stay with us for just one day.
The baby in the manger whose birth we celebrate wasn’t here for just one day. He didn’t pack up and leave and go back to His heavenly home after it was all over. The shepherds and wise men celebrated his coming for days…probably weeks… And He stayed on this earth with us for 33 years until his ministry was over.
We celebrate for a day and go back to our routines because that “specialness” is over. But why do we let that happen? Isn’t the miracle that happened 2000+ years ago worth celebrating for more than one day?
I don’t mean we should go out and buy more gifts to give, but we should stop and remember what we just celebrated. And continue that celebration of wonder and joy in our hearts. Share that feeling with others just a bit longer. Invite someone to share a bit more of the season with you, before our routines force us back to reality.
After all, the song tells us there are twelve days of Christmas. Let’s not limit the wonder to just one!