Story, Value, and Becoming More Real
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Scatter the darkness

December 10, 2019

Christina Brown


I hate winter. Truly. Mostly, I hate snow. And ice, and sleet, and cleaning snow drifts off my car, and lamenting snowed out events, and being bitten by shards of ice as I walk in the elements…

As a writer, I have always felt that somehow, I have failed the name of artists everywhere; that I should have a deep love of snow, delighting in its glow under a full moon like a silver-grey blanket, watching it pile up like fluffy cotton on the pine trees outside my window, and drinking in the pure white silence of its presence as it muffles the world. But I don’t. With one exception: Christmas.

Christmas, to me, has always been the one bright spot that exuded rays of light into the gray nights.

When I was a child, my mom would buy those huge tins of popcorn (the caramel was always my favorite), and my siblings and I would snuggle on the couch as my parents turned off all the lights except the twinkling tree lights. I remember the colors – the way they broke through the darkness in a splay of colors – how if I squinted my eyes I saw the blurs of a rainbow in the shape of a Christmas tree – and how that triangular shape drew my eyes up to the ceiling where the colors spread in needled patterns across the ceiling.

Now, as a mother of two small ones and keeper of my own house for almost a decade, I still imitate that tradition every year. Though each time I flip a switch that darkens the room, for me, the tradition feels like turning on a light.

We do live in a dark world. Whether that is literal darkness, or figurative darkness, truth is, the shadows of evil lurk at the edges of our vision.

When Christmas season comes, I am reminded that, in the midst of the cold and gray and darkness, a new creation is calling. So I celebrate – I celebrate with colors and glitter and candles and lights and greenery and ribbon and ornaments and feasting. I celebrate because I believe that the very act of celebrating is waging a war against the shadows – sending them scuttling away in fear at the light to which we play host.

I probably shouldn’t feel compelled to ever like winter or snow. If I remember to celebrate light in the midst of winter, I think I will be alright.

So Merry Christmas to you all – may the brilliance of this Christmas dispel the dark, and may your celebrations this year usher the coming of our Light of the World.

“Christ the Sun of Righteousness shine upon you, and scatter the darkness from before your path, and make you ready to meet Him when He comes in glory; and the blessing of God almighty, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, be among you and remain with you always. Amen.” – (Book of Common Worship, 1980)

The featured image is courtesy of Julie Jablonski and used with her generous permission for The Cultivating Project. 


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  1. Jordan Durbin says:

    I am right there with you! (although I am FINALLY beginning to appreciate winter . . . sorta).
    Thank you for this beautiful, honest piece!!

  2. You’re welcome, Jordan! I’m finally just being brave enough to admit it. haha. Glad to hear that the appreciation of winter has at least somewhat, begun. I’m working on it. 🙂

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