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A Gift to Open Now

From the December 1968 issue of The Christian Science Journal

As the Christmas season approaches, the nativity of Christ Jesus is retold in art, poetry, narrative, and music. Looking again at the loved symbols as the Christian world pauses to refresh itself with the tender sublimity of this holy event, we are inspired to rededicate self to the ideal of the Christ and to look for new ways to express the flood of joy and wonder our hearts feel. For some this joy is blurred because an unclear view presents the nativity as a wonderful but dimly understood occurrence of long ago, now celebrated to a great extent by social gatherings and material gifts. As a result many persons feel taxed by responsibilities and self-imposed burdens, conditions accepted as going with the season.

However, there is nothing in the original prophecy that includes such conditions. Christmas actually presents the spiritual ways to free mankind from accepting the empty appeals of material opulence or the glitter of counterfeit joys. The Gospel of Matthew quotes Isaiah's prophecy, "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." Matt. 1:23;

As we consider these words, we see that they not only prophesy the birth of Jesus but also signify his divine nature, the Christ, which, being incorporeal, is still unfolding to mankind today as the Comforter being demonstrated by Christian Science. And these demonstrations are "God with us" today. When we demonstrate this fact during the holiday season, we feel that ever-freshness of genuine joy which wings us happily through days of unselfed activities and undepleting, satisfying pleasures.

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