I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
I don't know about you, but the day after Christmas has always been a struggle for me. I'm not sure if it's the build up of energy that peaks at some point on Christmas day, or if it's unmet expectations, whatever it is, it's definitely a day that leaves me with a feeling of deep despair. It's just the opposite of what God intended when He gave us His one and only Son to free us from bondage to bring us joy and glad tidings. "And the angel said unto them, fear not, for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy." Luke 2:10
This year, the Christmas Eve service was truly a blessing which allowed us to quiet our hearts, to read scripture, sing songs and light candles in anticipation of Christmas morning. Typically, it is a time when there are strangers among us, coming to receive the hope of the Christmas message, to help us get in the right spirit for the greatly anticipated, blessed event. Jesus is always calling us, "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water." Hebrews 10:22
This year, there were seemingly no strangers among us, just a small group inside the church and some watching through other means. It certainly was in keeping with the current circumstances requiring us to social distance. And yet, we still sang songs of hope, singing joy to the world and wishing peace to all men, even when, especially when, all is not right with the world. It is good to know that Jesus remains the "same today as He was yesterday and will be throughout the ages." Hebrews 13:8
This season brings an abundance of activity, filled with special events, celebrations and lots of holiday baking and meal preparations. Now that it is over, Jesus calls us, "Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30
The joy of Christmas is far from over in light of the abundance that Christ offers, so let us take time to revel in the reality of Christ’s humanity and reflect on the good news of the Gospel, which begins with the birth of Jesus our Savior. "The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world." John 1:9 His name is Jesus and He was born of the virgin Mary in the town of Bethlehem. He came into the world not as He had created it, but into a world fallen into sin. He came into a world not filled with light, but covered in darkness. He is the only Light in a dark world. "I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows Me will not walk in darkness, but will have the Light of Life." John 8:12
In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.