Our eyes grow bleary viewing the same-old, same-old TV Christmas offerings, starting in July. The scripts are mostly boiler plate with new hometowns, characters with differing careers, each seeking fulfillment through the holiday festivals, new-found romance, and iced with a touch of nostalgia. You may yearn to discover such a place. But at the end, the film’s denouement may be unsatisfying, leaving unanswered questions.
I find myself looking for the children’s cartoon favorites: Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, Santa Clause Is Coming to Town–you know the genre. These stories seem to be saved for the Christmas Season, not appearing in July.
To me, Christmas actually comes when I’m privileged to see the children’s Christmas presentation at church. I’ve witnessed the chaos at the practices when the spirit of Christmas anticipation enlivens the kids to the point of mob mania. But put on the costumes, and a miracle happens. Mary and Joseph eye the doll in the manger differently. The little girls clothed in white dresses and fluffy wings almost become angelic. The Magi stand tall and stately, proudly holding their shiny gifts.
It wasn’t perfect. One shepherd strayed away with his sheep. One shepherd opted to stay off-stage. One wiseman didn’t want to give up his present to the baby Jesus. But these minor flaws simply added the spice of childhood.
Now, for me, Christmas can come.