Comfort and Joy!
Christmas is probably a favorite time of year for many of you. It is for me! There is something about the smell of wood in the fireplace, cookies baking, warm cinnamon, and pine that can bring back special memories. There are familiar carols that make us smile as we realize we know the words and can sing along. We see friends and family that we may not see at any other time of the year and we remember how much we love and are loved. We can recall the sound of wrapping paper, shopping and snow crunching under our feet. Our senses seem to come alive during the holiday season and we rest in the familiarity of tradition.
This year, it will be much the same. Carols, cookies, Christmas trees, and lights. There will be words read from the Bible that many of us have almost memorized without even realizing it. One Scripture that is read every year comes from Luke 2:8-14 and says, “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sing unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, ‘glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward me.’ “
Read this passage over and over this holiday season. Let the words remind you of the comfort and joy that comes from a relationship with Jesus. Let God speak to you in the comfort of the familiar.
It is my prayer that we would also remember that this amazing event—God coming to earth in human flesh—calls us to action. Mary stepped up to the task of Mother, Joseph took Mary and Jesus as his own, the shepherds and wise men went to see and then spread the word, and the angels proclaimed the message of Immanuel! In the comfort and Joy of this season, may we also break out of our comfort zone and proclaim to the world that God is here!
Rev. Jenni Piatt