In the midst of dream like surroundings, the promises have been made and now the party to celebrate the occasion may commence. The good eats, the dancing, the fun and laughter all culminate weeks of preparation and celebration of the greatly anticipated joining of two.
The truth of it is marriage is so much more than the wedding day. It is fitting and proper to celebrate the joining, but the marriage has just begun. The marriage will hopefully be celebrated for years and years to come. It was necessary to make the promises---but the promises did not make the marriage. Life makes the marriage. Living life together--often as a family--sometimes until the end--that is marriage.
And so it is with Christmas. The baby was born in fulfillment of the promises made long before. After the birth, their was a great party--a huge celebration from the heights of heaven to the pasture floor--there was rejoicing. Song, gifts, and perhaps even dance welcomed the promised Messiah.
It was necessary for the babe to be born and it was right and fitting to celebrate the day. The fulfillment of the prophecy and the gift of salvation was accomplished not in the birth, but in the years to come. The 33 years of teaching, equipping, leading, and the final sacrifice were all part and parcel in what was accomplished.
How wonderful that we celebrate Christmas and the birth of Our King all these years later! It is good to celebrate that long ago birth. As the party closes and all the trappings of the day are put away, I encourage you to wake up the next day and remember---to continue to live as to celebrate the gift which was accomplished long ago. Christmas is only the beginning of what we celebrate as we begin our new life with Him. Celebrate Christmas and then move forward with the sure knowledge of the complete gift set in motion on that starry night--long ago.