What are we talking about today?

I'll get back to theme days once I find a groove of posting regularly. In the meantime, most of my posts are about some variation of books, bikes, buses, or Broadway. Plus bits about writing, nonprofits, and grief from time to time.

This blog is mostly lighthearted and pretty silly. It's not about the terrible things happening in the world, but please know that I'm not ignoring those things. I just generally don't write about them here.

25 December 2016

Good Tidings of Great Joy

I promise I have no intention of posting twice a day every day for the duration of the 12 days of Christmas, but this is a particularly Christmas thought, and I'd also like to try something new and get it written down before I forget half of it. (And it's a Sunday post, so as usual I completely understand if you skip off now because this isn't your thing. No worries.)

Friday evening I went to Cincinnati Shakespeare's Every Christmas Story Ever Told, which was hilarious and completely irreverent and full of good-natured and affection-filled mocking of many beloved holiday classics. In one of those many contradictions that helps make me who I am, I followed that up Saturday night with going to the Christmas Eve service, which was quite reverent and celebratory of the birth of Christ. Mocking one night, praising the next; that pretty much sums up my entire personality.

But there was a moment, a beautiful moment in Every Christmas Story that tied the two evenings together. The three actors were hitting the highlights of A Charlie Brown Christmas. Sara Clark (as Lucy) laid into Charlie Brown for his dumb Christmas tree, Billy Chace (as Charlie Brown) asked for someone to explain the true meaning of Christmas, and Justin McCombs stepped into Linus' role (complete with grabbing a security blanket) to recite the passage from Luke 2. Now, just as a recap: this is the same Justin McCombs who moved me to tears during Much Ado a few weeks ago, who I had to stop watching during the scene when Claudio mourns for Hero because it was too painful, and dang if he didn't do it again. I'm gonna stop going to Cincinnati Shakespeare if I have to bring hankies to every show. (Kidding. I so am not.)

Anyway, so we're rolling along in this one serious moment from the entire show, and I was just thinking, "Wow, are those tears in his eyes?" when Mr. McCombs' voice caught, and I was done. Tears totally rolling down my face. Was it the character or the actor showing this much emotion? Don't know, don't care. The end result was the same no matter which it was.

At the Christmas Eve service, the pastor didn't read from Luke 2. He didn't talk about shepherds or wise men. He read from the first chapter of John, including the verse above (one of my favourites), and tears rolled down my face again. (Yeah, I cry a lot. That's why I switched from paper tissues to hankies--to save some trees. You're welcome.) God came here. And sometimes we goof up with this gift, sometimes we try to hold it all for ourselves, sometimes we mock the traditions that have arisen around this day of celebration, sometimes we just forget because of the mess we've gotten ourselves into.

But still. God came here.

A very blessed and happy Christmas to you and yours.

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