When Bing Crosby released his album “Merry Christmas” in 1945, it was a collection of Christmas songs written for an era unlike any the United States had ever seen. World War II and the Great Depression had just ransacked the populace, and Bing used his voice, smoother than chocolately satin, to offer comfort. “White Christmas” and “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” are two very familiar songs of his, and their message is painstakingly simple. They offer dreams of family, presents – home.
There is an element of melancholy to the Christmas songs of this era, simply because one knows Bing’s voice radiated over foxholes - and spoke of the comfort of home to boys who were far, far away from loved ones.
Even today, something about Christmas evokes something in each of us of home. We decorate our houses. We invite friends and family to see us. We buy little porcelain neighborhoods full of snugly houses covered in perfect snow. We visit loved ones and family and sit around a tree opening presents and eating food. And for a moment, things can often feel perfect.
To think of home – even briefly - brings comfort.
Yet, despite the Christmas-inspired comfort some of us feel at this time of year, social media and its interconnected ways have us looking at friends who do not get to come home. As the years grow on my face, I see more heartache – precious people who will never see their loved ones come home for Christmas.
And to those who will not be home for Christmas, or to those whose Christmases may feel lonelier than ever this year, I offer home. A real home.
This picture may look like an Instagrammed picture of my Nativity scene (and you would be correct), but to me, this picture reminds me of home.
Sometimes the little manger scene can look foreign and decidedly different. In a world of iPods and iThings, a little barn 2000 years ago seems old and outdated. Despite this, there is comfort in that manger.
Emmanuel. God with us. Christ our King, risen savior, our atonement.
He is the key to our true home.
See, sometimes it is hard to remember between the tinsel and lights that we’ve got another thing coming. Sometimes we’re so blindsided by the comfort around us this time of year that we forget that the true comfort resides within us. It leads and guides us here – until one day we go home.
So the next time you see that nativity in all its robed décor, think of home. Remember that He came to redeem, restore, renew. Christ in us, the hope of glory.
He came. And because He did, He will one day bring us home.
“If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” - C.S. Lewis