I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. I know that it is a bit early for my Christmas message, but this year I believe it is important for us to take some time and ponder this season. Christmas has so many levels of meaning that have been added to over 2000 years of celebrations, but the one constant that makes Christmas what it is is that we are celebrating the birth of a child in Bethlehem; a child that was born into poverty and persecution. The birth of Jesus was not of any significance to the world when it occurred. The people of Israel were caught up in the birth of another during those days: the birth of John the son of Zechariah and Martha. This birth and the circumstances of it were more well known because Zechariah was a Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem and if there was going to be a Messiah then why not a son of a Priest and why not in Jerusalem? There was no notoriety surrounding the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. No one knew of Mary and Joseph. Jesus was born just like millions of anonymous members of our human race. This is the beauty and the power of Jesus’ birth. The Son of God did not come as a king or a celebrity; he .came as a fellow human being in complete humility. This simple fact is what has inspired the imaginations of so many men and women as they pondered the wonder and meaning of Christmas. It wasn’t a great story that inspired. It was the lack of one that caused them to wonder. Where did this fellow named Jesus come from? Where did this worker of wonders and miracles come from? Where did this Savior of the World come from? The lack of the story was the story!
This year of a Pandemic Christmas I want for us to spend some time pondering that same mystery. Is it worth our time to think about Jesus? Is it worth our time to ask questions that have no answer? Is it worth our time to ponder the origin of the One who we now call the Son of the Divine, a Co-Creator, and God’s living Word? What’s His story? How is it like our own? How is it different?
Christmas is a season of wonder not because we wonder what gifts we will get, but because we wonder about the gift that has already been given and how it was given. Have a very wondrous Christmas everyone!