At the National Catholic Register blog, Joseph Pronenchen wrote about "Christmas in Africa" as shown through a collection of creches. Among them, a Nigerian scene stands out because, as he writes, "it includes the entire village engaged in their everyday activities during the birth of the Savior.".
For me, at least, it is easy to look at an isolated nativity scene under the tree or on the mantle and forget that there was a world around it. The census was in full swing. Families were uniting, travelers coming and going, daily life being lived. Meals were cooked, arguments argued, money exchanged, trash swept, animals fed. Life happened all around that scene, and it's likely that few, if any, knew what was going on nearby.
Doesn't that happen today, as well? God comes into the world quietly. He waits for us as we go about our daily lives. While we're working, relaxing, eating, or sleeping, God is present on this earth in every tabernacle.
We are meant to live as Christians in the world, not live in the church all day, every day. We are sent (from which we get the word "Mass") into the world to bring Christ, to show and tell that He is alive, He is real, and He is here. And we are called back each week (or each day) to come before Him and worship.
The bustle of the world is not ungodly. We are meant to work, play, rest, and spend time with each other. We must make sure, though, that even if we're not physically there before Emmanuel - God with us - we do not forget that He has come.