If you haven’t been thinking much about your body this Advent, I want to invite you to begin. It’s so important to truly celebrate Christmas.
We can approach Christmas too lost in busy-ness, consumerism, and perfectionism, but we can also approach Christmas over-spiritually.
The first Christmas happened so long ago and in a very different culture, so it can feel other-worldly to us. But your body holds the key to connecting you to Jesus’ birth and all it holds for you.
As I wrote last week, the Word became flesh to rescue your body. God was not content to see your body lost to sin, sickness, death, and decay. God became en-fleshed to rescue your flesh, your body.
And this is why your body is the key that can lead you into the essence of Christmas.
So practically, how can you let your body “turn the key,” so to speak, and draw you more deeply into this incredible mystery?
First, muse on the truth that God designed every part of the spiritual and physical fabric of who you are, and He delights in your body. You’re His poem (Ephesians 2:10).
So in that light, try to enjoy your body as you move through this season.
Consider His pleasure as your ears listen to music, your belly laughs, your hands cook or decorate or wrap, your tongue tastes Christmas favorites, your eyes take in colors and light, or your toe taps impatiently in line.
Here are some other ideas:
- Offer your body as a gift to others by serving in little or big ways, noticed or unnoticed by others. (In other words, love with your body.)
- Give holy kisses.
- Rest well.
- Hold a baby (ask permission if it’s not yours).
- Give someone a long hug who needs it (more do than you realize).
- Feel the cold on your skin.
- Feel your hunger, tiredness, tears.
- If you’re in a season of sickness or even dying, consider that this now, in your flesh, is what He came to heal and restore. Now or in the resurrection.
- And in the sorrows or disappointments of today, instead of slipping into frustration that the holidays aren’t supposed to be like this, let your body feel its longing for His second coming, when you will see Him face to face and all will be made new.
For all the wonder of your physical senses now, thank Jesus that because He took on flesh, your senses will one day be restored to their full capacity—to taste, and see, and hear, and smell, and touch, and love with greater joy than you can yet imagine.
Jesus, we eagerly anticipate Christmas with our bodies, and our bodies are more so waiting eagerly for Your return, when we will see you face to face, body to body, and all will be made new. O Come, o come, Emmanuel.
I’d love to hear your ideas! How else might you and I let our bodies “turn the key” to more fully take in the essence of Christmas? Leave your thoughts here.