A few years ago I was doing some shopping in our local mall (formerly the largest in the nation, at a time when malls were a new concept.) I, of course, expected to see the typical Santa scene, with lines of tots waiting to sit on the lap of this fatherly figure to share their most wanted wish list.
But what I found instead was the “Ice Palace”. Hmmmmm — that’s unusual, I thought. Where’s Santa? And who will be inside to greet the children when they reach the interior of the palace?
And then a chill came over me. Along with thoughts of the White Witch in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe who had placed a spell on Narnia, so it was “Always winter, but never Christmas”. A harsh environment with no hope of joy, peace, and celebration.
Edmund encounters the White Witch riding on a sleigh pulled by white reindeer. He has stolen away from his brother and sisters, curious about this “witch” spoken of by Mr. Beaver. And, because of his rebellious spirit, he is intimidated when Aslan, the true King of Narnia’s name is spoken. Queen Jadis is aware of a prophecy that will foil her plan and bring Christmas back. Four human children, or Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve, will have a part to play in the return of Aslan who will release Narnia from the harsh, cold spell it is under.
So, she is thrilled when she finds Edmund on the road. The White Witch entices him into her sleigh and proceeds to fill him with his favorite treat: Turkish Delight. (When you have tried this rose-flavored delicacy, you will understand why!) She distracts him, so he indulges himself with more and more candy until that is all he can think about. This greed causes Edmund to betray his siblings to the Queen of Narnia. Secretly, she plans to destroy them, and thus prevent Aslan from bringing back Christmas.
And that’s when it hit me. Those of us who celebrate the birth of Christ at this time of year are being distracted by the goodies of this world. Stuff. Celebration. Santa. Food. And more stuff.
But what about Christmas? Have we forgotten about the Christ Child? The one who came to earth to save it from Satan’s power? To bring freedom, joy, light, and forgiveness?
I think so.
In Matthew 2: 9-11 we read:
“After hearing the king, they (the Magi) went their way; and the star, which they had seen in the east, went on before them until it came and stood over the place where the Child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. After coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.”
What gift will you bring to the feet of the Christ Child? How will you worship Him today? Even though our celebrations are over for another year, we can still examine our hearts. . .
I hope I will give Him my heart, and not a wish list. I want to worship the God of the Universe. Not the god of pleasure and possessions. I want to worship the King.
What about you?
This post was first published on Jarm Del Boccio’s Travel Blog