Ah, Christmas Eve and what is there to do but wait...? (Wrap presents, stuff the turkey, last-minute shopping...OK, plenty to do then!) But, since I was a child, Christmas Eve has been a day of waiting and hoping, with barely concealed impatience. I remember once, going to bed and thinking: "I wish I could just close my eyes and open them again and it would be Christmas morning.." And, guess what? I closed my eyes and opened them again - and it was Christmas morning! Magic! And who can forget that exciting sensation of a heavy sock filled with goodies, at the foot of the bed?
My friend's young boys have been excitedly anticipating "Christmas Steve", as they call it! (My daughter commented drily that Christmas Steve sounds like a bloke whose tie has a red-nosed reindeer on it and plays 'We wish you a merry Christmas" endlessly!)
These days, for me, the whole festival has much less excitement and many more mixed emotions. But still there is the sense of waiting, and I find it's a helpful focus to walk up to church for the Midnight Service and recall just what Christmas is all about:
‘For to us a child is born…and he will be called Wonderful Counsellor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.’ Isaiah 9: 6
Wishing you a joyful, peaceful Christmas.