Well, Merry Christmas!
I have said those words many times to many different people. Sometimes not even really thinking about what they represent.
Oh, I know that Christmas is all about Jesus and His taking on flesh to be born into this world. It’s not that I forget the concept. But I do overlook just what that means at times.
Advent was certainly a time that people were looking for hope, peace, joy and love. Christmas is certainly a time that we laugh and love and celebrate. We get together with family and friends and enjoy getting and receiving gifts. As I type this now, I still have one young enough to have gone to bed believing that a happy fat man in a red suit will soon bring her gifts. (And he did!) Her anticipation of Christmas is for the the fun and gifts and the time that will be spent with family – hope, peace, joy and love.
And that is good.
But I am struck this year with what was anticipated that first Christmas. It was not gifts or celebration. It was not time with family and friends. And it was not eggnog!
Isaiah 9:2 says, “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.”
The first Christmas was marked by a people that were longing for an escape from the darkness and despair of their condition. They longed for a light to shine in their lives; for hope, peace, joy and love.
And boy, did that light shine!
Jesus was born. The Messiah. The light, not only to Israel, but to all nations. That light broke through the darkness and lit up the landscape so that people could see their way to God.
That, my friends, is Christmas. It is The Light piercing the darkness, making a way for us to a God Who loves us. A God Who loves us so much, that He wrapped Himself in flesh to be with us and to show us His great love by dying for us so the darkness of our sin could be overcome.
I pray you know that love this Christmas!
So, Merry Christmas!