Written by John Edgerton
"You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?" - Matthew 3:1-12
Church, can I confess something? I think I might hate the week before Christmas. Because at C-minus one week, all I can see is the wrath to come.
It is the wrath of express shipping on extra candle drip protectors, and office parties that make an audit seem painless by comparison.
It is the wrath of frantic and unpleasant shopping trips that leave me kicking myself for sleeping in on Black Friday…again.
It is the wrath of the deeply depressing annual rematch of that culture war classic—the war on Christmas. And honestly? I'm not sure where I come down on that one. After all, if you are involved in putting together Christmas Eve services, then you know the truth. You can either keep the Christ in Christmas, or you can keep the sleep in Christmas.
"Sleep? You'll have to ship that. It will arrive on the 26th," estimates my Mental Postmaster General.
But then I remember the sweet ache in my throat from straining to hit the high notes in Silent Night, and how careful kids are when they are holding their own candles for the first time, and the sound of my grandmother's voice at the other end of the telephone. I remember what we use the Christmas offering for, and I remember Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales, and I remember that I really love giving surprising gifts to my wife.
I remember that it's just one more week, and I can hardly wait.
John Edgerton is Associate Pastor at Old South Church in Boston, Massachusetts.