2. What one word from your own list of words describing this year sums up/best reflects your 2020? Tell us why.
3. Do you like peppermint? Peppermint mocha, a candy cane, peppermint bark, peppermint tea, York Peppermint Pattie, peppermint ice cream...of the peppermint treats listed, which one is your favorite? Will you bake anything featuring peppermint this holiday season?
Now that's a much nicer thought. Bring on the peppermint.
I bought some peppermint-striped Hershey's Kisses this year to put on top of cookies. (Bake the cookies first, white, chocolate, whatever; let them cool just a few minutes, then press in the Kisses while they're still soft.)
4. Besides Christmas, what do you associate the color red with? How about the color green?
Have you seen my Be an Elf post? Oh, sorry, I guess that's still Christmas.
Red? Roses. Ketchup. Hair. Maple leaves. Canadian Smarties.
Green? Frogs. Salad. Scout uniforms. Bits of unpeeled zucchini in muffins.
5. Is your tree up? Real or artificial? Is your house decorated? Is your shopping done? Started? Wrapped? On a scale of 1-10 with 1 being Scrooge-like and 10 being Buddy the Elf, how's your Christmas spirit?
We have an improvised Advent wreath and a couple of things out, but mostly no. No tree yet, but we will pull it out when we have time.
As for the rest, I'm working on it.
6. Insert your own random thought here.
I just finished reading a short essay by C.S. Lewis on "Forgiveness." He is most emphatic that, whether we like it or not, Jesus makes it clear that forgiving--though not excusing or trivializing our own sins or those of others--is not optional for Christians.
"To believe in the forgiveness of sins is not so easy as I thought. Real belief in it is the sort of thing that easily slips away if we don't keep on polishing it up."
Then I opened up a much re-read copy of Jan Karon's novel Somewhere Safe With Somebody Good, and the characters were discussing how "love is an act of endless forgiveness." Is someone out there trying to get my attention about that?
Yes, there's a lot to forgive this year, though perhaps not to excuse. Perhaps also to confess. And for all that, as Lewis said, we have to admit that there is sin.
But without that: no Advent. And no Incarnation.