Thoughts about Christmas......

Isn't it funny the way we all simply take for granted the Christmas story without the bat of an eye lid. In fact apart from a a few exceptions much of the world celebrates Christmas. In some ways it is one celebration which unites the world. If one unpicks the parts of the story it is all quite extraordinary. Not what you would be a plan to take over the world. So let's think about it God comes as a Baby. It's an absolute genius idea God in disguise as a baby. Who would imagine that God would come as a Baby of all things no-one would guess that surely. You might think that the whole episode would go unnoticed. However it seems that God did not want this event to go totally unnoticed and so he left a trail of bread crumbs that would lead people to a baby. If that wasn't enough a few who knows hundred or thousand Angels come to announce to some local nobodies in the form of shepherds about this miraculous event. At the opposite end of the spectrum are the other group of privileged people who were allowed in on this incredible event that would shake and change the shape of history. A group of wealthy astrologers who had been studying the stars and been led to the baby. Two very unlikely groups of people who were the audience for the introduction of this very special baby to the world.
So God didnot appear on the world stage in the ways that humanity would expect. Jesus didnot come as a triumphant king with pompan circumstance the first time. Nor was he born into a palace as one might expect but in a little town in the middle of no- where in a hut tradtionally known as a stable, where the animals slept. Furthermore he was born in a feeding trough and then wrapped in a few strips of cloth not the entry into the world that you would imagine.
The very event of that first Christmas tells us so much about the Character of King Jesus and therefore God. He didnot need to prove himself as God to anyone, just like today people need to choose to follow him out of faith not because God has proved himself to them. Isn't it incredible to think that the same baby that was born in that feeding trough is the same God who flung stars into space. As God didnot need a fandango to announce his arrival then neither do we. Jesus doesn't look for glory ur just attaches it's self to him. We neither should look for glory and if it attaches it's self to us we must send it straight back to him as only God can truly deal with glory it is the currency he lives with.
Christmas therefore is a perfect picture of humility ( which is perhaps another blog)
Now Jesus didnot stay a baby and if a Jesus is only around for us at Christmas we have missed the point. That first Christtmas was only the beginning. Although Christmas centres around Jesus being born as a baby and we sing about this baby in carols. We sing them so much that they lose all significance to us. Many of us will have sung Hark the herald Angels sing but in the last verse the lines that get me every time are ' born that no more man may die, born to raise the sons of earth born to give them second birth. Such incredible words. I guess what I'm saying is that because Christmas comes around every year and we hear Christmas carols all around we tend to think we know the a Christmas story like the back of our hands and that carols are just traditional songs with no meaning. We couldn't be more wrong.

Despite the fact that I love all the lights and decorations, even presents of Christmas. Beyond all the ridiculous consumerism which grips the world before and after the day. We have got Christmas so wrong. I also think that we put a lot of expectation on this time to be the best time of the year. If you don't have family to spend it with or you don't have a good time you can often feel shame for this. There is so much expectation attached to Christmas that so often disappointment follows afterwards. I don't believe God intended to create a custom and celebration where people would be under so much pressure and expectation to make it into a perfect event. 


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