“God from God, Light from Light… came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.” (from the Nicene Creed)
Christmas is a time to celebrate the Incarnate Lord, entering his own creation as a man in order to save mankind. I’ve always loved this phrase from the Nicene Creed: “Light from Light.” At Christmas, this image is made more powerful. One of the best things to me about Christmas time is the lights. We light Advent candles in church and look at Christmas lights on houses. The presence of these lights leads us into the season of waiting, expectation, and hope. And while giant inflatable Santas don’t necessarily say the same thing as candles in church or homes, I think there’s still something beautiful about some of what might be considered these more “commercial” aspects of Christmas. Christmas lights let us know that Christmas is approaching, that Immanuel will soon be born. They clue us into the fact that families will soon be gathering, food prepared, gifts given, and love put into practice in various forms. They clue us into the fact that Christ is among us even 2000 years later. And while I don’t think all the commercial aspects of Christmas are beneficial or constructive, the presence of lights in all forms bring us hope. They not only light up the dark winter night, but they light up our hearts and make us feel truly alive. Because if we don’t get bogged down in all the commercialism of Christmas, but let the presence of light enter our hearts and minds and bring us hope of our coming Savior, our experience of the Christmas season might be made a little more meaningful.