Each year, very early in December, I try to reread the Christmas Story from Luke 2 and Matthew 1-2. This read-through is not to gain new insights about Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, or even the Christ Child. I do this read, early in Advent, to remind myself of the “People Who Missed Christmas” when Christ came to Bethlehem’s manger. There’s the innkeeper, who was so busy with business that he passed up the opportunity to welcome the Lord. There’s King Herod, who was not going to give up the lordship of his life to any other king. There’s the religious leaders, who gave the Wise Men directions to Bethlehem, but were so caught up in their religious activity that it did not occur to them to personally go and celebrate the new thing God was doing in their world.
No doubt there will be people in December 2012 who will make the same mistakes and miss Christmas; people like you and me if we are not careful. We get over-booked, or haven’t surrendered our lives to the lordship of Christ, or get so caught up in the religious traditions that we miss encountering the God who longs to do something new in us. They are easy mistakes to make.
So reread the story with me, early in December. Let’s remind ourselves not to be among those who miss the true wonder of Christmas. “God is with us,” the Savior has come, God is at work in our neighborhood, there’s Good News of God’s love and salvation to share, Heaven has come to earth and our lives will never be the same—because of Christmas.—-Don’t miss it!
Peace and Love