This was written in response to a post by Jeff Goins on his blog. I highly recommend checking his site out!

For as long as I can remember, Christmas for me was never about one day of presents. It was a month long extravaganza of merriment, fun, and the joys of family and friends. I never needed a boost to get into the Christmas spirit. It came easily for me. Until the last couple of years, at least. It was clearly evident this year especially that I wasn’t at my holiday best.

I watched Christmas movies hoping they’d spark something. I’d sit and stare at the lights twinkle hoping they’d bring a flutter of joy. And I sang carols often hoping they’d lift my spirits. But none of them really worked.

It wasn’t a bad time at all. We had our usual traditions and played games until way too late in the night. We laughed and ate too much. We had wonderful fellowship with our church family. And I did get nice presents from my family and friends that I know I’ll enjoy.

Maybe it’s all the commercialism. Maybe I’m just getting older. Maybe it’s hormones. It could be a hundred of different reasons or a combination of them. I don’t know what caused it, but the ‘magic’ of Christmas just simply wasn’t there for me this year. I thought for a bit that maybe it was the weather. I don’t have to have a white Christmas, but I like for it to be cold. Which is silly, I suppose. Why do you have to freeze to have a good Christmas? There are millions of people around the world who are in the middle of summer during December.

My mother commented on my lack of enthusiasm several weeks back, wondering where all my usual festive excitement was and all I could tell her was ‘I don’t know.’ And I still don’t. I’m not depressed. I’m not emotionally distraught. I’m simply not connected in a way I used to be the season. And that’s a sad thing for me.

Now Christmas has come and passed and life goes on. I’ll watch and enjoy my movies, prance around the house in my new slippers, cover up contentedly with my Angry Birds throw, and make good use of all the presents my family blessed me with.

But that isn’t really what Christmas is all about anyway. At least, it shouldn’t be for those of us who claim the name of Christ. It’s about a child that was born two thousand years ago. (Yes, I know we don’t know the exact date He was born on, but we set aside this day to celebrate His birth and that’s how I’ll keep it.) If I had the right reasons for celebrating, would sadness – or whatever it was – have been able to win over joy?

I don’t think so. I was looking for the entire month of December for something to drive my happiness, when quite possibly I should have dove into God’s Word more fully and let joy have its place. There’s nothing wrong with presents, carols, movies, or any of the other Christmas traditions we have. I just feel like sometimes the entire reason we celebrate gets lost in the shuffle.

What about you? Was your Christmas everything you’d hoped it would be? Or did you find it lacking? If so, why?