Friday, December 14, 2012

December 14, 2012

       With tears in my eyes from the inconceivable news report of an elementary school shooting and precious little children killed, I changed stations on the radio, trying in vain to change the situation. Soon the strains of “It’s the most wonderful time of the year…” blared through my speakers, and I turned off the radio as quickly as if profanity were suddenly streaming from the station.

     Somehow it seems so wrong and inappropriate to sing of the holiday joy and merriment right now. Because right now, there are moms and dads whose little ones are not going to get a Christmas… a birthday… a graduation … a wedding.
      How can we think of Christmas now?
      When tragedy strikes, especially when it strikes the incredibly innocent among us, we look for answers and reasons. But when our collective hearts are breaking for such a real cause, there are no real answers and reasons. Maybe we will talk about laws that can change. Perhaps we will be a little nicer to each other. We promise we will pray for those taken and we vow we will take nothing and no one for granted again.
     But too soon we go back to our “normal”.
     We stumble.
     The whole world stumbles.
     And how can a stumbling, bumbling world even think about celebrating Christmas?
     But then I turn the radio back on and I hear the words of “Oh Holy Night”:

"O Holy Night! The stars are brightly shining
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining.
‘Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
   For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn..."
     Perhaps a stumbling, bumbling, mixed-up world needs Christmas more than anything.
     We know Jesus wasn’t sent to us as a reward for the world being so good. He wasn’t born in a manger because we deserved it.
     But He was born in that manger.
     For us.
     And that’s the miracle of Christmas.
     “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”(John 3:16)
     Maybe tonight we can hold that Truth…. and our kids …a little bit tighter.

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