Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
It is with relief and joy that we come to this blessed day once more.
We are relieved that the season of searching and shopping has passed. The rush is hushed … or mostly so.
We are relieved that our preparations are done or near an end. And what is not done will have to stay that way … and it will be okay.
Relief comes from deeper places, too.
The bright day for which we long has come, the day of Love’s dawning has appeared amid bows and wrapping paper and shared smiles—maybe tears, too—as packages are opened and love is given. Our hearts feel the affection of givers who again try to express in material terms what mere words can’t convey.
But each we gift open awakens our awareness of another Giver, the Giver of life who comes to shed light on our cold faces and make us feel alive and glad once more.
On Christmas Day there is little more to do than to feel the heart of the Great Giver, who has only one thing to give … himself, light and love, eternal blessing, grace and a warmth that awakens our chilled hearts amid winter’s cold.
We come to this day to feel the relief, once more, of being touched by the everlasting longing of God for each one of us.
What good is it that Christ is born in Bethlehem, in poverty and plainness, if I do not know and feel that it is for me that he comes?
For if all the world held but one soul, my soul, the God of heaven and earth would be pleased to come … for me, and to give me God’s own heart and life.
The Word becomes flesh … for me.
The light shines in the darkness that I might see and know that Christmas begins in the heart of an everlasting longing for me … and for you, a passion we can only begin to understand.
Created in the image of God, the image of infinite love, we live out our lives seeking to satisfy an inner ache for this love, which we know is our home.
Our hunger is fanned by unfulfilled dreams, unhealed wounds and our need for release from all that weighs on our souls and steals our joy. Our hearts are restless until we know life unlimited and love unbounded.
Such is the nature of the human heart … and the heart of God.
God longs to fill us so thoroughly that every fear evaporates and all that remains in us is the delight of being alive and the joy of holding within ourselves the light and love no darkness can destroy.
Christmas begins before the dawn of time, before the first gentle fall of snow, before winter’s frost made brilliant art, silver and blue, on barren limbs and car windows; before the red cardinal’s flight excited human hearts at the miracle of color, before it all … was the Word, the heart, the passion, the hunger of the One who is Love and nothing but Love.
Christmas was already there in the divine heart. The Word was ready even then to be planted in our earth-bound souls and give us life.
From all eternity, the Great Giver was hungry to be born and joined as one with us.
After all, Love wants only one thing … to give itself away.
There was never a moment when Christmas was not on the way, never a moment when God did not plan to become flesh in a peasants’ child to reveal his beauty, never a moment when the Holy One did not hunger to share all that he is with us.
Christmas comes on the wings of Love’s everlasting desire … for you.
So let Christ come and fill you. His light seeks every lost corner of creation and every cold place in your heart that you may shine with the beauty … of Christmas morning.
Pr. David L. Miller