Believe it or not! Christmas will soon be here and our celebration of Christ will continue throughout the coming year. Yes, 2013 is about to open the door to all the uncertainties of the coming new year. In the past few weeks I’ve been watching and listening as we celebrated Thanksgiving, and then embarked upon our journey through Advent. The days, the weeks, the hours, seem to be passing by like an ice cube melting on a hot summer day. Just where have those hot summer days gone?
Smiling, I ask that question in the reality of having to shovel all the snow on Sunday. Watching the snow fall I had time to reflect upon some of the sights and sounds from the past few weeks. There seems to be more manger scenes on display than in the years past. A few of them have the Magi surrounding the cradle and offering their gifts to Jesus. Should this be? The understanding is that the Magi’s journey began after the birth of Jesus.
“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem.” Luke 2: 1 NIV
Some say that the baby Jesus is not to be part of the manger scene until Christmas Eve. Pondering all this I walked into the church office and there on the top of the filing cabinet, waiting for Christmas Eve, were six mangers filled with straw. Snuggled in the straw was baby Jesus. They had been set aside, in an out of the way spot, waiting to become part of our Christmas celebration. Waiting to be . . .
“And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace”
Isaiah 9: 6b
Smiling, my thoughts brought forth this question. How many of us will pack away the nativity; with the shepherds, donkey, sheep, shepherds, Magi, Mary, Joseph and even Jesus, after Christmas? Placing them safely in a box. Storing the box in a dark closet, out of sight and out of mind, until Advent begins in 2014.
After reading this many of you are saying, “What’s the point of all these words?” It comes down to what’s important! The question is this: “Where will Jesus be in your life in 2014?” Will Jesus truly be Immanuel, “God with YOU”, or will you place him on the shelf and look for him when you have a need? Will Jesus be welcomed in your life every moment or just on special occassions?
Think about it! Have a Happy New Year!