Christmas Is a Promise

(First posted December 2013. I wanted to revisit a Christmas post from a few years back that is just as pertinent today.)

At Christmas, it’s easy to get caught up in all the celebration and miss the real meaning. Our lives are so busy and sometimes, when life is rough, it hits hardest at Christmas. Our non-Christian friends will look at us not understanding why we say they should  have hope when their world gets rocked. Sometimes it seems that Christians get a reputation of being people who blindly follow without closely examining their faith.

“Your church is great when everything is going well, but what about in my life? When things get off track? It just won’t fit.”

How do you find God at the children’s cancer ward, the mortuary, Christmas morning after a bitter divorce, or a night at the bar? After calling nine one one, or an ambush in (fill in the city).

Praising God is easy(?) in church on Sunday morning, but does He really exist in our world, now?

To me, in any circumstances, I have to praise Him, proclaim him. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He doesn’t exist. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He’s not relevant today. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He doesn’t care. I’ve met Him.

And He’s given us all a message that he’s here with us, in any situation. Even in a manger. Emmanuel doesn’t just speak about His physical presence, but also His emotional presence. He does care.

That’s what Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “I Heard the Bells” was all about. He was one of America’s most beloved poets, but his life had been rocked the year he wrote this. His wife had died and the Civil War had just broken out.

Where does anyone go to look for hope at a time like that?

In two of the strangest, most illogical places. A manger and a cross.

Jesus is still here with us. Just sometimes it’s hard to see Him through the dust, smoke, and tears.

Click here to hear Bing Crosby’s rendition.

After a year of hate, peace on earth. What a great dream. And a Divine promise.

I’d like to wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a super New Year. And please leave a comment below.

Merry Christmas, And Listen for the Bells

Sometimes it seems that Christians get a reputation of being people who blindly follow their faith. Their accused of being people who refuse to think about their faith.

“Your church is great when everything is going well, but what about in my life? It just won’t fit.”

How do you find God at the children’s cancer ward, the mortuary, Christmas morning after a bitter divorce and a night at the bar? After nine one one, or an ambush in (fill in the city).

Praising God is easy(?) in church on Sunday morning, but does He really exist in our world, now?

To me, in any circumstances, I have to praise Him, proclaim him. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He doesn’t exist. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He’s not relevant today. I’ve met Him.

I can’t say He doesn’t care. I’ve met Him.

And He’s given us all a message. In a manger. Immanuel doesn’t just speak about His physical presence, but also His emotional presence. He does care.

And that was what Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “I Heard the Bells” was all about. He was one of America’s best loved poets, but his wife had just died and the Civil War had just broken out.

Where does anyone look for hope at a time like that?

In two of the strangest, most illogical places. A manger and a cross.

Jesus is still here with us. Just sometimes it’s hard to see Him through the dust, smoke, and tears.

Click here to read about Mr. Longfellow and his poem, I Heard the Bells.

Happy Birthday, Jesus. Thanks for the present.

‘Tis the season to celebrate Jesus’ birthday. Try to let the hustle and bustle, the crowds, the music, the lights, the excitement not hinder you from experiencing Him, but to just add to the excitement and mystery of who He was, is and will be.

It is strange to celebrate someone’s birthday when it’s the guests that gets the priceless gift and not the one having the birthday.

I want to remind you of a post I did a few Christmases ago. It’s a story Paul Harvey told about the meaning of Christmas.

To me, this is spot on. Immanuel. God, coming down to give a message to me, to us, to you.

Wow.

 The Man and the Birds