“Awake, mankind! For your sake God has become man…I tell you again: for your sake, God became man.” —Saint Augustine
As we move into Christmas, I wish for you the peace and joy that only Jesus brings. Whether you are prepared or not; whether you are well or not; whether you can afford gifts or not; whether you can be with those you love or not …
… take time to set your sights on the thing that really matters.
Maybe sit beside a nativity scene or where you can see a Holy Family ornament on your tree. Meditate on Luke’s account of Jesus’ birth in Lk 2:1–20. And notice:
- Mary and Joseph were away from home and had nowhere to stay—yet Jesus came to them
- The shepherds were on night duty—but an angel brought the news to them, special delivery (and they were treated to a heavenly concert, to boot!)
- The shepherds were afraid—yet that fear was swallowed up in joy
- Mary and Joseph had nowhere but a manger for the child—and it did not make a difference
It’s easy to allow circumstance to mar our joy. But maybe, if you’re swamped by obligations or displaced or having trouble paying rent, let alone for gifts and decorations (or even if you have those things)—maybe it will help to remember:
This is why Jesus came, and how.
For your sake he came poor and helpless. For your sake he braved a callous, dangerous world. For your sake he did without the lovely home, the beautiful decorations, the feasting. Jesus gets it. He has been where you are. Mary and Joseph get it. To their nothing-ness, came God. And angels sang and simple shepherds brought good news, and joy.
This Christmas, may you be surrounded by angels and filled with songs of joy, knowing with what love God comes to be with you, right where you are.
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice! For the Lord is at hand. And may the peace of God, which passes all understanding, keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (See Philippians 4:4–7)
© 2022 Sarah Christmyer