Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas This Year

A few days ago a friend posted on Facebook ...

"This year I am pondering what Christmas means to God."

Ya'll, I cannot get it out of my head.  

What did that night in Bethlehem mean to Him?  Was He surprised at the obedience of Mary and Joseph?  Did He sorrow at their long journey into Bethlehem knowing they would find no room?  Did He bless the innkeeper for having compassion in the offering of the stable?  Did He smile and rejoice at the amazement of the shepherds?  Was He pleased with how quickly they made it to the stable?  Did He sigh at the beauty of that night knowing it would lead to the ugly of the cross?

And, how long did He have to wait for us to remember that He had promised this night so long ago?  And that He told us EXACTLY how it would happen?  Do you think that caused Him to shake His head just a bit?

He gave His best willingly.  Because He knew.  He knew there was no other way except through the ugly of the cross.

We lost a friend Sunday night.  Quietly in his sleep, Stacy went Home.  Well, maybe not so quietly ... because I dare say all of Heaven rejoiced at his making it Home.  He bravely battled cancer ... never complaining.  Asking God for healing, but more than that, asking God to be glorified.  And, He was.  He truly was.

Christmas takes on a new meaning this year.  The lights on the tree cannot begin to compare to THE Light of Heaven.  The presence of our family and friends cannot begin to compare to His presence.  The greetings and well wishes we receive from those we love cannot begin to compare to the Good News He gave us so long ago.  The gifts cannot begin to compare to His ultimate gift.  A teeny, tiny baby ... born in a stable, but come to save the world.

God knew the necessity of the cross ... and only He could give it a beginning in a stable.

(This Christmas, as you see the lights on the trees and houses would you pray for Stacy's family?  He leaves behind a sweet wife and three children ... today was his oldest daughter's birthday.  I cannot begin to imagine the sorrow.)