Mary tucked away the voices and events and visions of the epic birth of her child. Prophets had foretold his birth; angels descended out of heaven announcing his arrival. Astounded shepherds hurried from surrounding pastures to Bethlehem to see him. Despots were terrified at the news of his birth. He was said to be Emmanuel—God with us.
Pondering Christmas Memories
Do you have Christmas memories you treasure in your heart? Often our remembrances lie dormant. Then, Thanksgiving comes and goes. All of a sudden it begins to feel a lot like Christmas! Outside the air turns crisp and cold, classic Christmas carols fill the airwaves, family travel and gatherings are planned, colorful holiday lights and decorations glow and glimmer. Ads, promising the perfect gift for those special people in our lives, bombard us through every possible medium.
From deep within our hearts, Christmas draws out memories. What remembrances do you treasure? What bits and pieces of treasured moments, from days gone by, do you ponder? Take a moment to recognize them. Treasure them. Ponder them. List them.
Pondering the True Meaning of Christmas
Yet, it’s easy to forget isn’t it? To never get back to the birth of the Christ child. It all began with Him. Christmas is about, and because of, the incarnation and arrival of Jesus. Sure, the story has subplots of expensive gifts given by wisemen from the east (our traditions and economies have surely gotten that part down), but the real story is about Jesus’ gift of himself. It’s the mystery of God becoming man. Scripture tells us we can receive him—we need to receive him. He’s the gift unlike and above all others.
Like Mary, the best thing we can do is treasure and ponder in our hearts that story. Like Mary, would it not be best if we pondered it all? Quietly. Prayerfully. Adoringly. Humbly. Thankfully. Asking ourselves, “Why were we gifted with Jesus in the first place? Do I know the full story? Why did Jesus’ birth cause such a ruckus? What is the gift he came to give?”
This Christmas, take the time to ask the questions and seek the answers. Ponder them in your heart.
Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.
Christmas Eve Candlelight Service
On Christmas Eve at 5:30 pm, please join us for a celebration of Christ’s birth with joyous songs, the reading of the Christmas Story from Luke 2, and lighting of candles.
Posted by Bill Shorey, Senior Pastor