On Christmas Eve, we head to the candlelight service at our church where we enjoy singing Christmas hymns, always ending with "Joy To The World." Then it is a mad rush to drag our parents out of church so we can get home. As my dad always says, Jesus was born in a manger, so on Christmas Eve, we celebrate by heading to the barn for chores. The cows get a little extra silage for a Christmas treat and efficient, lighthearted work gets done quicker than any other time of the year with the four kids and my dad all cruising on the farm. When the chores are done, we sit down to a grand meal prepared by my mom and enjoy each other's company.
Every year we then read the Christmas story as a family. It started with Dad reading it to us, but now the kids pass around the Bible and read it to the folks with the old eyes (Mom and Dad :) ). Opening gifts ends our evening with "It's A Wonderful Life" playing in the background.
Throughout the Christmas season each year, it is easy to get caught up in traditions, shopping, cooking, and traveling. Regardless of our family traditions, there is one tradition that should be kept at the center of Christmas rituals.
He is the original Reason for the Season.
"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord."
As we mingle with others this Christmas, let us remember to keep the tradition that started over 2,000 years ago alive: celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
Just a few thoughts from a farmer's daughter.