In eight short days most Americans will be celebrating Christmas. There will be presents, delicious food, precious family time, and bittersweet reflections on memories of Christmas past, and those who won’t be with us. It’s a time of family, tradition, love, and joy.
The days leading up to December 25th are a very busy time for the Martin family, and I’m sure our other Northside families are no different. There are gifts to buy and wrap, the house must be decorated, parties must be attended, food must be prepared, and in all these details, it’s easy to forget that we celebrate this time as the earthly beginning of God’s perfect plan.
I understand we have no definitive date for the birth of Jesus, but this holiday bears his name, and its time well spent meditating on the weight of God in the flesh coming to earth. It’s a time when those who are not in Christ see nativity’s and go to church services (if not just for the sake of tradition.) They sing Christmas carols that very obviously communicate the wonder of God’s amazing plan but consider them no greater than Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer.
I am guilty of this myself. There is a Christmas carol I sang many times when I was younger, and I loved the tune, but I had no idea the weight of its words until I was a much older man. As Christians we know the story of the birth of Jesus Christ. We know that at his birth, something new was introduced into the world, and God’s master plan was coming to fruition. My favorite verse in this Christmas Carol is as follows:
O holy night! The stars are brightly shining, It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining, ‘Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices, For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn. Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born.
What beautiful words. My encouragement to you this Christmas season, is to seek out someone in this weary world who has no reason to rejoice, and simply share these words with them. Ask them if they know what this song means, and then share with them Galatians 4:4-5 “But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.”
Christ was born, he died, was buried, and rose again on the third day. The weary world has reason to rejoice! Merry Christmas Northside.