Insight for your “Journey across the Sky”
Random Ramblings from the Resident Raptor
The celebrations have ended, the decorations have all come down, the gifts have all been exchanged, and the memories have all been made. Now it is time to box up Christmas for another year as business returns to normal. Check-out lanes at the local merchants are getting thinner, the return lanes are closing down, and Christmas music has been replaced with pre-Christmas Muzak programming.
The debate over Christmas displays have ended, and all things return to normal. Yet the fact that a child had been born of a virgin in Bethlehem should never be lost even though the nativity sets have been packaged away for yet another year.
What really is the meaning of Christmas? Why is there such a celebration? Would it matter a whit if Christmas was boxed away forever?
It would seem arguments against Christmas, which usually sprang from the secular left, have sprung up from the religious right as well. Prominent pastors warned of Santa replacing Jesus as the focus of the holiday and a fringe Baptist church in Kansas wanted a sign placed in the Washington State Capital warning “Santa Claus will take you to Hell.” How far we have come from the days of “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus” to today where even prominent church leaders are calling for the demise of Christmas.
In, what many call the best loved Christmas movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”, George Bailey, played by James Stewart, becomes disillusioned with despair, from a downturn in his business and wishes he were dead. Guardian Angel Clarence, played by Henry Travers, intervenes and shows George what his little town would have been like had he never been born.
Can you imagine a world in which light never shines, darkness is never vanquished and Jesus was never born? Can you picture a place where evil reigns unchecked and mankind is left to his own devises in dealing with a depraved soul? Can you imagine a world where God never intervened in human affairs but rather just sat back and let us kill and destroy each other?
Let me take you back to a Christmas past when the whole world lie sleeping and the earth was covered with the darkness of unbelief. Into this world came a light that still shines today. Born of a virgin, in the tiny little village of Bethlehem, laid in a manger, attended by sheep and shepherds, this tiny baby was born who would change the world forever.
And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matt 1:21-23 (KJV)
The angels were the first to celebrate this arrival to Earth when they proclaimed with a loud voice, ”Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace among men in whom he is well pleased”. Thus we can sing along with the angels, Joy to the world the Lord has come, let Earth receive her King! That sounds like a celebration to me!
What say you? Should we just box Christmas up forever and never again sing ‘Joy to the World’? Or should we constantly remind ourselves and our children that indeed there is a Christ in Christmas?
Yes America there is a Jesus Christ! A birth which we can celebrate because of the good news the angels brought. Hark the herald angels sing, glory to the newborn King, peace on Earth and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled! Hallelujah!
I think I will unbox Christmas and allow the season to extend a few more months to remind myself of this great joy!
But those who are waiting for the Lord will have new strength; they will get wings like eagles: running, they will not be tired, and walking, they will have no weariness. Isaiah 40:31 (BBE)