Hasn’t Christmas become, in some ways, the kingdom of desire? Advertisers invite us to long for material goods, promising a very merry Christmas if only you purchase this toy, this purse, this gadget, this decoration. We make lists of what we want. We even teach our children to tell Santa what they want, centering their first-ever celebrity encounter around the concept of desire.
And yet we all know deep in our hearts that we won’t be satisfied by the material trappings that run alongside the Advent season.
The very fact that we are unsatisfied by so much shows our longing for Christ. And our longing for the Christ child is not a single-faceted desire, swiftly satisfied and unceremoniously cast aside to make room for the next shiny new thing. No. The arrival of the Messiah is the one and only thing that can truly satisfy human desire.
This message is excerpted from “Longing for Christ” by Maggie Olson in the December 2017 Gather magazine.
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