“A child is born to us! A son is given to us! And he will be our ruler. He will be called, “Wonderful Counselor,” “Mighty God,” “Eternal Father,” “Prince of Peace.”” [Isaiah 9 : 6]
I hate to break this to you all but next Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent and Christmas is less than five weeks away. If this strikes fear into your heart, don’t worry there are still 33 shopping days until Christmas Eve. It seems to me though that there is not such a flurry amongst everyone I know. Maybe we have all learned not to get stressed about things [especially since the Lockdown] as we have discovered what is important in life and stress is not one of these.
As we prepare for all that we do at Christmas, for the Celebration of the Arrival of the Christ Child, we each have our own traditions and our own way of sharing. All of these are valid as they reflect our family life, the past remembered, those no longer with us brought to mind, the hope for all the plans to be fulfilled on Christmas Day. A time where Joy and Peace breaks out and everyone becomes a little kinder to each other.
If you think that our preparations for Christmas is a long and complicated process, they are nothing to the Work of God. He brought about an event which contained in its elements prophecies from the beginning of time [John 1 : 4-5], through the age of the prophets[Isaiah 9 : 6] to one certain night in Bethlehem. [Micah 5:2].
Think of how He got the Holy Family to Bethlehem, an order from a pagan ruler [Luke 2 : 4] which meant the poor family were stuck when they found no ability to get shelter. Yet they were visited by Wise Men from the East who had followed a Star [Matthew 2 : 5-6]. A Star placed in the heavens to lead the Men to Jesus before the child was born in Bethlehem.
Preparation was perfect and everything occurred as Planned, every prophecy fulfilled, everyone in their place at the right time. With God, His Plan and His Timing is always perfect. It was then and it is now. I am not comparing any one of us with the great event at Bethlehem, but I am sure that in your life you have noticed a God – incidence.
Help coming at the right time, a kind word just when it was needed, a problem somehow gets “sorted out”, an answer to prayer. These are the products of Gods Work in our lives whether we realise it or not or acknowledge it or not. I hope that as you prepare this year and think of all that God has done for you that you will be able to count your blessings and that there will be many.
I leave you with this prayer written by Robert Louis Stevenson
HELP US REMEMBER THE BIRTH OF JESUS, THAT WE MAY SHARE IN THE SONG OF THE ANGELS,
THE GLADNESS OF THE SHEPHERDS, AND THE WORSHIP OF THE WISE MEN.
CLOSE THE DOOR OF HATE AND OPEN THE DOOR OF LOVE ALL OVER THE WORLD.
LET KINDNESS COME WITH EVERY GIFT AND GOOD DESIRES WITH EVERY GREETING
DELIVER US FROM EVIL BY THE BLESSING WHICH CHRIST BRINGS
AND TEACH US TO BE MERRY WITH CLEAR HEARTS.
MAY THE CHRISTMAS MORNING MAKE US HAPPY TO BE YOUR CHILDREN
AND THE CHRISTMAS EVENING BRING US TO OUR BEDS WITH GRATEFUL THOUGHTS,
FORGIVING AND FORGIVEN, FOR JESUS’ SAKE.AMEN
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