Peace of Christ to you! Perhaps I am letting my present circumstances dictate my writing this month, but sometimes you just can’t help it. I am currently in bed as I am writing this article fighting through some kind of bug. I feel like there’s a balloon inside of my head, there is so much congestion in there. I apologize if that is too much information, but if you hate winter illnesses as much as I do, you understand where I am coming from.
It always plays out this way, doesn’t it? We never appreciate how great it is to be healthy until it is suddenly taken away from us. When it becomes abundantly apparent when we are sick, whether it’s a passing, seasonal cold or something more serious, it’s so hard to appreciate the time when we were fully capable. If I was healed this moment, I would have so much gratitude for a few hours, maybe a few days, but then go back to the same expectation of good health, with no gratitude at all.
I’m no psychologist, but my guess is this comes from the faulty belief that we can control our health. We expect to be healthy because we are the ones in charge. If we want to stay in gratitude, it requires a humbling of oneself. We can’t pretend to have everything within our own power. True gratitude comes from understanding the gifts that are freely given to us, knowing that it can’t be manufactured or controlled by us. I have a true thankfulness for my health, my friends, my family, my faith, everything, when I realize that I received it not because of my actions, but from other people’s love.
That should dictate our Christmas celebration this year. Nothing we did or ever will do will compare to the gift of Jesus Christ descending from the right hand of the Father and becoming man. We didn’t control it, dictate it, or deserve it. And if we aren’t careful in acknowledging this, we risk being ungrateful. Don’t wait until you are spiritually sick to rejoice in the Incarnation of Jesus.