Behind our Christmas customs and rituals
Christmas is inarguably the most exciting season for children and adults alike. It makes (nearly) everybody giddy with excitement and anticipation.
The birth of Jesus offers a glimmer of hope for us, and we do activities that have become customary and traditional for this special celebration. But what do they signify, anyway?
We fill our streets with lanterns, but we don’t just hang them because they’re pretty and add sparkle to our dimly-lit communities. Lanterns symbolize the star, the brightest flame of light that led the three wise men to Bethlehem, where our Redeemer was born and was laid in a manger made of hay.
We don’t just sing carols in the late hours of the night to collect crisp bills. Our collective singing is our way to hail and proclaim the coming of the Lord Jesus.
And we don’t just give and receive gifts because we want to lavish ourselves with material things and temporary bliss. It is because the spirit of Christmas is about giving, sharing and extending a helping hand. Just like how God the Father gifted us with His only begotten Son.
Christmas is always beyond what we see on the surface. Behind these customs and rituals that some may now regard as compulsory, may we remember to become individuals with an understanding of the true essence of this season.
Let’s surround ourselves with family, friends and loved ones. Be grateful. Be compassionate. But most importantly, remember the Divine Savior and His birth.
EDELAINE ELLENSON QUEEN G. ENCARGUEZ
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