Sunday, December 28, 2008
Christmas for others. .
This year Christmas followed me with thoughts of how Jesus 'was rich, yet for your(our) sake he became poor, so that you(us)by his poverty might become rich'[2 Cor.8:9]. At our Christmas service this year it occurred to me that the birth of Christ, the entering of God as flesh into the world, was amazingly complex. Full of vision, dreams, fleeing, and fulfillment of prophecy. . . nothing silent,clean, or comfortable about the night of His birth at all. The song by Andrew Peterson says it perfectly in "Labor of Love". I need to listen to this every year, maybe more often that at Christmas. Fortunately I had the opportunity to contribute towards Christmas gifts for a couple families in Fairfield. It blessed my heart so much so that I hope every year there will be someone to help with Christmas. When we usually hear the word "poverty", we tend to imagine a third world country, the marginalized of the world, living in slums. This is true poverty, but here in America there are people living in poverty nearby as well. I read something interesting in the book I'm reading Just Generosity. It states that our Creator made us in His image, needful of clothing, food, care, and His love. These things are not negotiable, and throughout the Bible the word 'poor' is used over and over again. Don't you think God is trying to get through to us, especially those of us who have so much, and give so little? At church we are weekly addressing needs in the community, reflections of God's call to live differently, but especially to admire, worship, and love God in all strength and heart by desiring to live as the incarnate body of Christ, not another church on the corner. It seems radical at first, but it's actually the simplicity of Christ's likeness that allows one to give freely and cheerfully of their resources, time, and heart to those who are in need. No matter the cause, God speaks clear in Micah 6:8,"He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." amen. Merry Christmas !