‘Twas the night before Christmas – no not the one with tinsel and bows and Christmas trees – the one over 2000 years ago. Almost no one knew what was coming and even those that had an inkling did not understand the magnitude of the moment.
For most people it was just an ordinary night. No baited breath for what presents might be opened the next day. No day off work. Just an everyday day. The world was teetering on the edge of the most remarkable event in its history – angel choirs were in final rehearsals – The Father spending the final moments communing with the Son – and the world slumbered. People ate their suppers – discussed their days at work – were sad, tired, weary, alone – unaware that God was preparing to come in the most unexpected of ways.
This world groans. We feel its groanings – its pains. Try as we might we can never quite escape it – never quite find happiness – for all its merriness even Christmas often fails to bring the satisfaction it promises. Sometimes the veneer slips off the “most wonderful time of the year” and we see another year that has somehow slipped by – the bills piled up – the gifts broken – we think about those we have lost and wonder if we will ever find whatever it is we are missing in this life. We sigh. We groan. We long for something different, but real peace remains elusive.
And just like the people in Bethlehem who on that first Christmas Eve expected nothing to change we too can easily miss the miracle and wonder of Christmas. Of all the evidences that God loves us, that night in Bethlehem is one of the most poignant. Jesus left His throne and became one of us – one of His creatures! What could speak more powerfully to the love God has for us than that he left the splendor of heaven – his position – his power – his authority – He laid it all aside and emptied himself and became a man to rescue us. He left knowing he would become a baby, knowing he would be born in a stable, knowing he would die an ignominious death though innocent of all wrong. He did that for the joy set before him – to redeem you from sin and death and to present you faultless to the Father. Let it sink in. Let it overwhelm you. Let Him satisfy all that you long for. He alone is sufficient.
Into our darkness Jesus – Immanuel – God himself, the Light of the World has shone and is now shining brightly. You are immeasurably loved by the one person who is able to overcome the darkness. “Here is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent His son to be the substitute sacrifice for our sins.” I John 4:10
Twas the night before Christmas. It need not be ordinary. It need not be empty. God Himself has come and He has come for you and me. And the world rejoices!
Merry Christmas My Friends