Christmas wreaths and the encircling love of Christ

A Christian Science perspective: Inspired by the love expressed in her neighborhood, one writer cherishes the deeper message of Christmas.

I couldn’t help but notice a recent flurry of festivity across the street. The local Cub Scout troop had ordered fresh balsam wreaths for the holidays and my neighbor’s house was the pickup location. Cars lined up along the curb, and folks streamed up the driveway toward the stacks of wreaths. Moms and dads greeted each other with smiles, and their little ones – who cradled their prized wreaths – shouted "Merry  Christmas!" to their friends

The gracious goodwill expressed in that scene touched my heart. It was a dark evening, but the lights along the street shone brightly. So many wreaths on doors all around! And most with spotlights, so that each red ribbon or little bell might sparkle throughout the night. I thought of all the loving hearts who hung those wreaths, and felt inspired to cherish a deep love for God and His Christ.

Christmas speaks to me of God’s infinite goodness, which, like the figure of a circle, has no beginning and no end. Its deep significance extends beyond any calendar date, because God’s healing grace and ever-present Christ are eternal. Jesus, God’s Son, embodied the Christ, and this season I feel fresh gratitude to Jesus for all he did on his God-appointed mission to illuminate the Christ, Truth, for all mankind. Both his virgin birth and his later resurrection from the grave presented unmistakable proof of infinite, eternal Life, which is God.

Jesus actually demonstrated the Science of being – that God, divine Spirit, is our one and only Father or origin, and that we are God’s offspring – His spiritual image and likeness, reflecting His divine substance and intelligence (see, for example, John 4:24 and Matthew 6:9). Thus there can be no separation at all between God and man, between the origin and its expression. Christian Science, which derives from the teachings of Jesus, has helped me to see that each of us reflects forever the eternal goodness and love of our Father-Mother God. As Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer of Christian Science, writes: “God and man are not the same, but in the order of divine Science, God and man coexist and are eternal. God is the parent Mind, and man is God’s spiritual offspring” (“Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures,” p. 336).

The illumination of this Science in our consciousness can uplift and heal us today, just as it healed and saved those long ago who were receptive to Christ Jesus’ ministry. Jesus gave his followers a deep sense of the law of God – the absolute government of omnipotent Love, and of their oneness with God. This law, or truth, remains unchanged over the centuries and is not confined to a holiday season. We, too, can gain a truer sense of divine Love and of Love’s benevolent control of our lives. This understanding, which comes to our receptive hearts, awakens us to a purer sense of our divine origin. We see ourselves more clearly as Love’s own ideas, governed by His law of good, which displaces fear, pride, anger, and even physical suffering – leaving healing in its wake.

No matter the circumstances that face us, no matter how dark the night seems, we can know in prayer that God pierces the seeming darkness with the light of His presence. Jesus never let the dark pictures of suffering throngs close his eyes to God’s love and glory. And for us today, our eyes can’t be closed either. The eternal presence of God remains at hand to heal and bless. In Christ Jesus’ own words, “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12).

I will continue to appreciate the signs in my own heart and in others’ of God’s ever-encircling goodness, expressed in compassion, joy, and goodwill. Though we may glimpse but faintly now the eternal Life that is God, the knowledge of our oneness with God, divine Love, can be felt and demonstrated, step by step, as we seek this all-encompassing grace and affirm God’s presence. This is the Christ at work. The eternal Truth, or Christ, has never left the earth, never abandoned anyone, but shines a healing light in human consciousness. Its healing power will forever bless the thoughts and prayers of humble hearts that make room for it.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Christmas wreaths and the encircling love of Christ
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today