I apologize for being randomly hit and miss with this blog of late. This time of year- in addition to the full load that we all already carry— so many voices are vying for time and attention that something invariably suffers. I have observed from personal experience that most often the one that gets edged out or set to the curb in our well-meaning Christmas hustle is Jesus and the true meaning of Christmas.
I won’t belabor you with the list of things I’m NOT doing this year in an effort to scale back the madness…but you should consider this your Christmas card!
Thinking I was ahead of the “Christmas game” after mailing out checks this year to the kids and unrepentantly, dropping out of the local Christmas Choir, I had today all slated for study and writing to my heart’s content. However, I awoke this morning to 8 inches of snow. I know we need the moisture and while I am very grateful that it wasn’t the 2 feet of white stuff some sources were predicting, it has still completely altered my plans.
This is not the fluffy stuff one can sweep off the porch with a stiff broom. Oh no, this is the freakishly heavy, “cement” snow. It beautifully bows the evergreen branches and glistens on the terraced expanse of steps staggered from my porch to the driveway level and artfully conceals a deadly layer of ice. I will let Mr. Moore bust out the snow blower and deal with the quarter mile slalom we call our driveway while I get the steps and walkway cleared. I can hear the walkway mocking me as I drink my coffee and wonder if my health insurance premiums are up to date.
It will take the better part of the day to accomplish this monumental feat. If no one slips a disc, or has a heart attack we have been invited to a Solstice Party tonight. I’m not sure what this is. It sounds vaguely pagan, making me think of yule logs, or Stonehenge and a bunch of druids. It certainly establishes my earlier point of Jesus being set to the proverbial curb. Additionally, it is a “pot-luck” solstice party so I have to come up with a semi-tasty dish to drag along for the experience. I’m not sure what is appropriate “Solstice Party” fare might be: Moon Pies?
Second cup of coffee at 8:45 and it has begun to snow again. Suddenly I am thinking a Christmas trip to Tucson to visit the grandkids may not have been a bad idea!
Here’s the bottom line, my friends. It isn’t about the stack of gifts you get or give, how tall the tree or elaborate the menu at your Christmas gathering. It isn’t about the parties or programs you attend. It isn’t how much money you have or don’t have or how happy you are at any given moment. It shouldn’t even be about a specific time of year. Jesus needs to be the focus of our lives and the underlying theme of our chatter. His love and compassion need to be the melody line flowing through us day in and day out. That testimony of Jesus’ power and wonder in our lives needs to be growing weightier all the time. All the time! (If it isn’t, I recommend you evaluate some serious things and see what’s out of whack.)
We all live, work and mingle with those that are lost and don’t even know it. It is all too easy to fall into that trap that we have all the time in the world to share with or impact those “druids” in our sphere of influence. Mingled with hectic lives perhaps we worry that someone may be offended, ridicule or beliefs, or that it could cost us our livelihood or status or create a kerfuffle at the water cooler or dinner party. Valid considerations. But here’s the deal. As Christians, we are all called, and chosen to pick up this amazing gift we received and give it away over and over and over- and to do so faithfully. (Rev. 17:14)
Some deliver the necessary “Jesus” message but forget the deep, supernatural love that it ought to be wrapped in. It isn’t merely my motive to offer an alternate route to someone so that they don’t go to hell. This is the ultimate Love Story. It is the Story of Jesus and His redeeming blood paid on the cross to buy us back from that scary, inevitable, eternal end that is the true Christmas story. He also purchased for us the opportunity for real-live relationship with Messiah- with the King of Kings!
It is only when we mix that wonderful, redemptive salvation plan with his power of the Holy Spirit that the lightbulb clicks on, and sparks fly, and the whole “Christian thing” begins to wake up, move and make sense! This isn’t merely an alternative philosophy in a world where many philosophic voices scramble for equal recognition. No, Jesus gifted us the Holy Spirit to powerfully show folks that He is whom he claimed to be. By proxy we now have His authority. Now, and only now, are we fully enabled to miraculously impact a dark and dying world with this JOY TO THE WORLD.
At any time of the year, on any day of the week we are equipped to deliver a personal love note from Him- not only with the Good News- but, every single time we heal someone who thought they would always be wheezing from Asthma or debilitated, in darkness from horrible migraines. It’s a liberating, Jesus love song of freedom each time we teach someone and lead them thru deliverance from spirits of addiction or anxiety. It’s a specific, personalized love letter to give to those broken in loneliness, believing a lie that they are unlovable: not worthy, or special or damaged goods. And on it goes….where ever He leads. (Matt. 28:18-20)
People, we must fall in love with His full message of Love all over again (Rev.2:4-5), and not only can we impact our families and friends but we can snatch back our country and change the world. That is our daily Christmas Card—It is ALL about the Joy!