Flash Mobs at Christmas

by Marcia Lee Laycock

I love the videos of flash mobs that circulate on
YouTube and Facebook, especially at this time of year. I love to watch the
faces of those in the malls or city squares as they realize that something
unusual is happening. The looks range from bemused delight to open-mouthed awe.
Cell phones quickly appear to capture the event and the applause at the end is
usually long and loud.
What is it about these spontaneous events that
delight us? 
We aren’t
expecting it. Who expects a symphony orchestra to suddenly strike up in a food
court? The people doing it look just like us yet they are doing something out
of the ordinary, something fun and sometimes spectacular. Ordinary routines are
suddenly halted, an ordinary day is turned into a festival and the focus on
scurrying around to shop is forgotten. Strangers smile at one another and share
the delight of discovery. For a few moments a community is created.
As I watched a video of a flash mob the other day I
thought of how perfectly it exemplified the spirit of Christmas.
Who expected the Messiah to be born as a baby in a
manger? The people involved were ordinary people who looked just like all the
others in that era yet they were involved in a world-changing event – something
totally out of the ordinary, something spectacular. The ordinary routines of
Mary and Joseph, the shepherds and the wise men were suddenly halted. An
ordinary event, the birth of a child, on an ordinary day, became the pivot on
which history would turn. Those who came to worship the Christ child on that
day were strangers to one another, but they became companions in a journey that
would lead them to the most important discovery of their lives and a joy that
would never leave them.
As I thought about it, I thought about my own
attitude to yet another Christmas season. I’ve seen over six decades of them.
Yes, I’m that old! And sometimes I miss the delight and the joy I had as a
child, because it is all so familiar. It’s all so commercial with the constant
pressure to buy and my jaded attitude causes me to miss the glory.
Perhaps that’s why I love the flash mobs. They renew
my joy in this season, they renew my delight in the story that is still the
pivot of the world’s history even after more than 2,000 years.
As a writer of faith it’s important that I sustain
that joy and delight, not just at Christmas time, but all through the year,
because without it I cannot pass it on to my readers. Without that connection
to the reality of the only story that truly matters in this world, I cannot
write the stories that will point people to it and perhaps even draw them into
an eternity of joy.
What about you? Has
your attitude toward Christmas been dulled over the years? Has it been jaded by
all the commercialism? Click into Youtube and find a video about a flash mob. (Here’sone that might work). Or better, open your
Bible and read the story again. Ponder the event that changed the world. It
might just renew your Christmas spirit and fuel the joy that will seep into
your work all year long.
 “Sing, O heavens! Be joyful, O earth! And break out in
singing, O mountains! For the LORD has comforted His people, and will have
mercy on His afflicted.” (Isa 49:13 NKJ)
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful
Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isa. 9:6 NIV)
Marcia Lee Laycock writes from central Alberta
Canada where she is a pastor’s wife and mother of three adult daughters. She
was the winner of The Best New Canadian Christian Author Award for her novel,
One Smooth Stone and her work has been
endorsed by Sigmund Brouwer, Janette Oke, Phil Callaway and Mark Buchanan. Abundant Rain, an ebook devotional for
writers can be downloaded here.
Visit Marcia’s website


An Unexpected Glory is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Kobo.

Missing Christmas is available on Amazon