Advent version of 1 Corinthians 13
If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I’m just another cook.
If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.
If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir’s cantata, but do not focus on the coming of Christ, I have missed the point.
Love is kind (though harried and tired).
Love doesn’t envy another’s coordinated Christmas china and linens.
Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of the way,
but is thankful they are there to be in the way.
Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return
but rejoices in giving to those who can’t.
Love bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails.
But as for wreaths, they will come to an end; as for Christmas trees, they will come to an end. For we celebrate Christmas only in part, but when Christ comes again in glory, Christmas will come to an end. When I was a child, I looked through the Sears Wishbook as a child and dreamed of Christmas like a child; but when I became an adult I discovered the joy of "some assembly required." For now we celebrate Christmas as consumers, but then we will celebrate Christmas as worshippers. Now I place my hope in finding that new toy everyone wants and the pearl necklace, and getting golf clubs; then I will place my hope knowing Him even as I have been fully known.
Now the faith and hope in Christmas are in shopping, but there is still the gift of love this Advent, and the greatest of these is the gift of love.