I think you have to experience winter to know what desolation and death can be like. It can be unbearable.
It’s the season where everything dies, even bacteria. It becomes freezing cold and numb; where the landscape is just white and colorless. Looking at the vast expanse of snow gives me a feeling of emptiness, of being all alone. And in many parts of the western world, the dreariness of winter can even be suicidal.
Now, we don’t really know if Jesus Christ was born in winter. Some scholars say that, because the shepherds were out that blessed night, it’s highly improbable. So why celebrate Christmas in the dead of winter?
I thinks it’s because if we believe that the birth of our Chirst is the symbol of hope, then winter is the best time to have that hope. And so we sing “Joy to the World, the Lord has Come!!” because we need hope the most when we experience the winters of life. We need to endure our winters so that when spring finally breaks, and it will, we can appreciate life more and live it to the fullest.
I like winter because it anticipates a new year. So I do new year’s resolutions for new things like health and exercise (hahaha) and recommit to old values like working harder with higher levels of efficiency. As the year closes and a new year is upon us, the birth of Christ at this particular time becomes even more significant. And so we hope that Christmas brings new changes in our life: a better job, more love, prosperity and even a better government.
I like winter because I can travel with my family. We never really grew up together you see, as three of my siblings grew up with my aunt and grandmother. And even today, with a sister now living in Los Angeles, it’s hard for us to be complete. And so two weeks out of every year, we can be a family. And so, despite the dreariness of winter, the warmth of family keeps us alive with hope and love.
They say Christmas is about love and family. That much is true. As we get older, we realize that all we have is each other. Christmas has become a commercial enterprise and it sad, because I will tell you this, and this perhaps is the secret of happiness.
“Never love things that cannot love you back”.
By Jj Atencio