That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown!
— Linus van Pelt
If you are like me, you grew with the tradition of watching A Charlie Brown Christmas during Christmas season—that, along with Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and It’s a Wonderful Life. I loved those shows and couldn’t wait to watch them when December came around.
That word wait is important. This same season is known as Advent, which means “coming” in Latin—adventus. As we believers wait for His coming (both His coming again and the commemoration of the waiting for Jesus’ birth), we have an even more compelling anticipation for the wonder Christ will bring: hope for the world!
What I love about the story A Charlie Brown Christmas is how the plot develops, building momentum for the climax when Linus quotes Luke 2. Every year, I waited with great anticipation as the plot thickened and the story unfolded. Then, Linus, probably the youngest of the cast, shares the great wisdom of Jesus coming: His advent! For Jesus came to bring us “tidings of great joy” (Luke 2:10, KJV). The hope of the world rested in this child Jesus.
The beauty of this artistic production is that this great news is so overwhelming that everything else goes silent as Linus shares. The news is so fantastic that the angels burst forth in praise sharing what has happened. The anticipation of Advent is that Jesus has come and is coming. He is the hope of our world. Nothing else even compares.
Why Charlie Brown? Why Linus? Because this story for me is both a wonderful inspiration and an opportunity to share this awesome news with those around me. It’s so easy to talk about A Charlie Brown Christmas with my family, friends, and those I pass by. For my generation, it’s very familiar and opens the doors for the telling of Jesus’ great story.
How about you? As we celebrate Jesus’ coming and long for His return, what’s your story? What inspires you so much that you, like Linus, must share the hope of the world? We have “tidings of great joy” that are worthy of the angels’ praise! Join me in sharing their great news this year.
The above entry is from the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism's advent devotional. Permission to repost courtesy of BGCE.
This year, Advent is officially Sunday, November 27 through December 24, 2014. There is still time to get started. Here are two different options for Advent devotionals, and we trust that these reflections will help enrich this advent season for you.
1. "Where the Light Shines Brightest," the advent devotional from the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism.
2. "O Come Let Us Adore Him" includes meditations on the Advent Season by many members of the Asian Access community.
Note: Image of Linus Van Pelt is a screenshot from "A Charlie Brown Christmas" 1965, copyright Charles Schultz.