I have noticed that each account of the story of the birth of Christ has pathos as each person to whom an angel appeared was facing some sort of apparent trouble. Thankfully the apparent trouble turned out to be a short term problem and a long term blessing. Life is a lot like this.
Over the years I have seen very troubled couples, families and a few churches get over divisions and come to understand that joy is often brought about through the womb of pain, of struggle. The birth of Christ certainly followed this stream to ultimately blossom into the ocean of salvation.
I admit to being something of, to use the words of the Great Blonde, a Scrooge. I do find my prayers asking for grace to face yet another season of wild spending, and silly get togethers with grandchildren. I try to tell her that it’s only been a year since we last saw them, and kids don’t change all that much in a mere twelve months. But you know how senseless and unfeeling grandmothers can be.
I really got in the doghouse, though the dog won’t go in it, (Our dogs sleep in the house) due to my saying that on the supposed first Christmas Joseph and Mary left their home to sleep in a barn and Christ is our substitute, so we shouldn’t have to do the same thing. Talk about lead balloons.
Even famous writers like Garrison Keillor end up being fatalistic about Christmas as witnessed by this from the genius behind The Prairie Home Companion:
“A lovely thing about Christmas is that it's compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together.” Garrison Keillor.
Having learned to read at around five years, I have long thought I would like this time of year better had I lived in Cromwellian England. Due to his warped view of Christmas it was banned in Merry olde England. I tried to drive by the mall earlier today and I actually caught myself thinking, “Our idea of this season could stand a little warping here and there.” I kept that to myself, else I would be the talk of this burg as another preacher finding a lawyer to counter the assaults of a wife going through the throes of infuriation at the mindset of her Scrooge-like husband.
NOTE. You do NOT have to FWD this to Joyce.
I have decided to be more Christ-like this year and do as Paul suggested in James 1:2, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;”
Copyright © 2014 Larry Lilly
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