The countdown has begun! Today, September 17, represents 99 days until Christmas.
Isn't that rushing the season a little bit?
Why would any sane person do such a thing so soon?
First, the opportunity. A few years ago, a high school student came door to door selling Christmas things for a band fund raiser. I found a Santa Claus holding a gift box that counts down the days until Christmas. I thought it interesting and paid $10 or $15. As it turns out, the countdown dial goes all the way up to 99! How about that! The Santa Claus broke and we now use only the gift box portion you see here.
Second, the season. Growing up, Christmas was among the top happiest memories of childhood - grandparents and extended family, presents under the tree, two weeks off school, decorations, music, the whole thing. Come to think of it, Christmas began on Christmas Eve when we went to my grandparents'. As a result, the countdown really began Sunday evening because for me Christmas still begins on Christmas Eve.
Now that I have a family of my own, Christmas is still a top happiest memory of my adulthood - even though I miss my grandparents a lot, and traditions change, I still look forward to all of it. We are a single income household on a budget, so this is our one big chance to give extra to our families and friends. Tis better to give than to receive!
This year we are putting up two trees! Transforming our home with Christmas decorations, especially the tree, is a big deal.
Third, and most important, The Reason For The Season. After trusting in the person and saving work of Jesus Christ in 1990 at the age of 24, I've appreciated more and more how God Himself, the Creator of the universe, chose to invade the time and space continuum, lived the perfect life we could never live, took our punishment for sin, rose from the dead, and will return for those of us who know and love this truth.
That's worth getting excited about every day.
Part of that excitement is getting the most out of my Countdown to Christmas Santa Claus.