Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Light of Christmas

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.
For those who lived in a land of deep shadows-light! sunbursts of light!
Isaiah 9:2 (Msg)

Who can argue with this scripture when it refers to people walking in darkness?  Surely, in our day and age, we are a people who walk in darkness.

  • There are refugees who have lived in refugee camps longer than I have lived anywhere in my adult life.  
  • Slavery still exists all over the world, more that we would ever want to admit.  Statistics say that only 1-2% are ever rescued.
  • There are families raising their children in areas that are full of radiation all around Chernobyl.  Never mind GMO's and bottled water.  These people are eating and drinking radioactive water and food. 
  • Members of my family will have a different kind of Christmas as they remember the little boy who went to be with Jesus last Christmas Day.
  • There are soldiers away from home this holiday.
  • There are people fighting cancer with everything they've got.  
  • There are people struggling with abuse, depression, and addictions everywhere you look.
Need I go on?  

But this scripture also says these same people have seen a great light.  I love how The Message puts it - "sunbursts of light".   That light - the light of Christmas is HOPE.  Hope is what ignites us.  It allows us, no pushes us, to have joy in the midst of darkness.  Because it is the hope of our Salvation - Jesus - that in reality keeps us moving forward.  Today may be bad, but tomorrow can be better.   This world is not all there is.  It is rightly said that we are all fatal.  Not one of us gets out of here alive.  And yet, we can have hope, because we are told of a better place.  A place where
      • the lame will walk
      • the blind will see
      • Families will be reunited
      • Horrible diseases will be no more
      • No hurting souls
      • No jealousy
      • No greed
      • No prejudice.
      • No earthquakes
      • No wildfires
      • No drought
      • No floods

This.  THIS is the HOPE of Christmas.  Baby Jesus was born to die for MY sins - for YOUR sins, so that one day we could reign on the New Earth with HIM!  Think of the most beautiful place on earth, improved 100%.  We get to go there!!   Crazy, but true.  As my pastor says, "You can't make this stuff up!"

So take heart friends.  If you are hurting, know that Jesus came to comfort you and one day all things will be made right.  If life is good, know that one day, it may not be.  But Jesus came for that day too.

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