Don’t Throw the Baby Out with the Manger

Remember when Christmas was simple?

You were probably a kid.


Pine trees.

Frosted sugar cookies.

Adults tend to complicate things.


Pre-lit trees.

Maxed-out credit cards.

Sometimes in our attempt to simplify, we say no to all things Christmas. We go overboard and throw the baby out with the manger.

So how do we achieve the seasonal oxymoron of a simple Christmas? How can we remember, recognize, and rejoice over The Gift without getting caught up in the hoopla?

Do one different thing that relates to what Christmas is.

This year I’m focusing on the age of my youngest grandchild. She is two and a half—most likely the age of Jesus when Magi from the East showed up at the front door with very grown-up gifts.

No Fisher-Price. Instead, hard cash, perfume, and burial oil. Ever wonder what Mary and Joe thought of that?

When I look at our toddler, I imagine Jesus at her age. I can’t envision Him with a halo and folded hands, sitting dutifully at Mary’s feet.

I see Him running and squealing and tumbling and crying, just like our two-and-a-half-year-old.

God took the hard way in: childhood. Would you do yours over? Probably not. Nor would I. But that’s how much He loves us. There is no phase of our growing and living with which He cannot relate.

This year as we simplify our Christmas festivities, let’s remember the manger and the bundle lying there.


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Joy to you this Christmas!