And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
And in these last few days, it becomes personal. We have built up our sense of longing. We have tried to prepare our hearts. We have heard again the stories of those who were part of that first Christmas. And now the Word is ready to dwell with us. Are we ready to see his glory? to receive grace? to experience all that he has for us?
If you're like me, you may still be thinking, "no! I'm not ready!" The Christmas cake only has marzipan on it, there's tons of people we never did send a Christmas card to, and the presents - well, they'll probably get wrapped by Christmas Eve. And even after all this Advent blogging, I still feel much more like a dusty old stable than a sparkling house.
But you know what? Christmas Day will arrive on Wednesday regardless. And if I spend it looking at all the things I never got done, I won't enjoy it at all. But if I make the decision to fully experience the day - the family, friends, carols, presents - then I probably won't even remember those cute decorations I didn't get around to making.
And Jesus, fortunately, doesn't wait until we've got ourselves all cleaned up and perfect. He plunges right in, dusty stable and all, and says, "Hey, I'm here now. Just look at me, and I'll deal with all those things you thought you had to do."
So, ready or not, let's make the decision to experience Christmas, and to experience Christ.