The reason for Christmas joy

Phrases such as “Merry Christmas” and “Joy to the world” ring out during Advent as people eagerly prepare for Christmas. Or at least that’s how it should be—if you’re not stressed by Christmas shopping and other preparations. Or if peaceful contemplation isn’t overcome by sad memories or disappointment.

In the opening words of “Christmas Morn,” a poem by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, we read, “Blest Christmas morn, though murky clouds / Pursue thy way.” Yet, the next line points to the origin of the light of Christmas morning as above any murky cloudiness: “Thy light was born where storm enshrouds / Nor dawn nor day!” And the poem continues, describing Christ as “God-idea, Life-encrowned,” “gentle beam of living Love,” and “Truth infinite,—so far above / All mortal strife” (Poems, p. 29). Here, the poem speaks of divine Love as untouched by human circumstances and standing above all suffering. 

Mrs. Eddy was speaking from the depth of her own experience. After less than a year of marriage, her first husband died. Back in her parents’ home, she gave birth to her son, George, but when he was a young boy, he was sent to live with another family because she was considered too ill to care for him. The marriage that she then entered into, with the hope of getting her child back, ended up a great disappointment, as her husband was unfaithful. 

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‘Whose day is it, anyway?’
December 16, 2019

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