Actually it is a misnomer. Tomorrow isn’t really Christmas Eve until sundown. It turns out that the day use to end at sunset and so the new day started in the evening. This is why we have so many holidays like Christmas Eve, New Years Eve, and even Halloween. Of course this means that tomorrow at sunset it is officially Christmas. For all those times that you were told that you had to wait until morning to open your presents because it wasn’t Christmas yet was a lie, just like the cake.
We buy a lot of lies about what we can’t have yet. We can’t have a life of victory because we aren’t in eternity yet. I think that is the biggest lie we buy. Jesus death and resurrection did come with a time delay switch. The grave has already been defeated, but we live like we are still under that slave driver. We worry so much about what tomorrow may hold that we forget to live today.
Jesus came that we might have life, and have it more abundantly. He did go through all of that so that we could live the same life we might have lived otherwise. This doesn’t mean that we are called to have a life full of things. Actually it probably means the opposite. All of the things really get in the way of a full life. We are concerned with the things we have and getting more things. IF we get past that and find joy in what we are given then that is the first step to living an abundant life.
That really is the problem with Christmas. We let all the stuff get in the way. We focus on gifts. Some of us are obsessed with the gift we get while others are obsessed with the gifts we give. Neither view really captures the point of it all. We need to become more like Christ and become obsessed with people. That was the reason for it all. Sure Jesus is the reason for the season but people are the reason he came. We need to start focusing more on people. Not giving or receiving, but rather loving.
I think that we should make a point of telling people we love them this season. Sure we can use word, but remember actions speak louder than words. Tell people you love them by doing acts of love, just like Jesus did. Give up your own comfort to serve others. I think Jesus washing the feet of his disciples better captures the whole of what Christmas should be better than the baby in the manger. We miss the real idea of the baby in the manger because we see the gift, both Jesus and the gifts the wise men bring. The real idea is that the eternal Christ stepped out of the glory of heaven and into a baby in a lowly place. That is why Jesus getting on his knees and washing dirty stinky feet really captures the idea.
We cannot comprehend what it is to step out of the status that Christ stepped out of into the stature he walked into, but we can grasp what it is to step out of our place of comfort to do a lowly and overlooked act of service like washing feet.