Christmas: God with us

Jesus is Christmas

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6

It’s Christmas once again, as we celebrate the birth of Christ, the coming of the awaited Messiah.

“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).

Matthew 1:23

One of my favourite Christmas songs is Bryan Duncan’s “The Form of Man” – the lyrics never fail to remind me of the astonishing truth of Christmas:

“He wrapped his love in flesh and blood and he took the form of man.”

The extent to which God would go to dwell among us, to love us, to redeem us, is truly beyond comprehension. With total vulnerability, Jesus the Son of God submitted himself to share our humanity. He walked this earth with us, and entered into our mess.

“God the Father sent His son and we held him in our hands.”

Whatever your Christmas looks like, whatever burdens you may be carrying, may you find peace and rest in Jesus, the one who came to be God with us.

With love and blessings,

Ann

Image sourced here.

Too busy for the real gift?

Christmas Presents

It’s only two weeks until Christmas. If that thought makes you feel panicky inside chances are that the end-of-year busyness and all the preparations needed to make Christmas ‘perfect’ (or at least meet the family expectations) are taking their toll.

All the end-of-year events, the planning, the shopping, the decorations, the gift wrapping, and the cooking. In conversations about plans for Christmas I’ve been surprised by some of the responses. There’s so much to do, even thinking about it is exhausting, and they can hardly wait for Christmas to be over. Then there’ll be time for rest.

In the busy onslaught of Christmas preparations, do we miss the real significance? To celebrate the birth of Christ, the Prince of Peace. Ann-Maree Keefe has an insightful song called Busy. While it’s not specific to Christmas, I think it’s a timely message. In it she sings:

and the peace that was promised
held out as a gift
we run straight past it
for the door of a lift
and my heart is heavy
when I hear you say
you’re just too busy

What will you do with God’s gift of peace and grace as you come into this Christmas season?

Image sourced here.