PILOT KNOB LUTHERAN COMMUNIQUÉ
(Official communication to the public)
Every year it is slipping away from our grasp, our sight and our mind. Yet every year it begins earlier, but the message is not the correct one. They’ve missed the mark, the point, the reason and the very purpose. From all appearances it seems it’s all about profit, no not prophet, revenue and things. Of course this is what makes the economy grow, personal accounts shrink and brings happiness, at least for a day or two.
Well we all know Christmas gifts can’t bring lasting happiness nor will the gifts remain shiny and new forever. The joy they promise will only fade and disappoint. As parents we know that, as we watch children and grandchildren rip off the carefully wrapped packages that bear their name. Some toys will be broken before day break, a few may last until next Christmas.
God our Father also knows what will bring lasting peace and joy and what will not. He understands the momentary excitement upon opening a gift wrapped box and being thrilled with the discovery inside shouting; “This is what I’ve wanted!” There is no harm in exchanging gifts and being excited opening the unknown. Even Jesus received gifts from men who were wise.
Knowing man can produce nothing to bring lasting peace, joy and happiness God comes in person on that first Christmas bearing the gift of all gifts, the one that can transform any person from his selfishness nature to a true son or daughter of God. Then you experience true and lasting peace and joy not simply in your mind, but your heart, a joy and peace that is not dependent on people, revenue, or the new and latest gifts.
Jesus came into the world as we did, through the natural process of child birth. He came to show us what we could never know or learn much less experience: what God Almighty, our creator and judge is like. Jesus lay in a manger looking up at Mary and others; it was God looking at Mary and Mary seeing the face of her maker. How truly awesome is that? It’s the face that changed everything, world history and every person who walks this earth. You cannot encounter Jesus without there being a response that will affect your life.
His eyes are those that cried tears over Jerusalem’s rejection of their savior, the same eyes that gaze upon you and I from conception till death. His ears heard his mother’s voice even before his birth and the ears that listen attentively to our prayer and worship. His lips that Mary kissed, that spoke unintelligible sounds are the swollen and bloody lips that spoke from the cross, “forgive them” and “it is finished.” He came into this world innocent and he left this world guilty and stained, not from his sin but yours and mine. He could not bear seeing each of us suffering the wrath of God for eternity, so he came of his own free will to receive our punishment that we might be resurrected as he was, never to die again.
That is the truth about Christmas, a message we must not bury under advertisements, gifts, food, parties or indifference. It’s a message that can change lives now and forever. He is the only gift that will bring lasting joy and peace, peace with God and inner peace of mind. This gift will not fade or get old and tarnished, but continues to live within you and grows as you feed on his word.
What does this Christmas mean to you?
Sunday 17,10:15 Sunday school for all
Sunday 24, 9:00 AM Christmas Eve candle light service.
Sermon: The First Christmas
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