Do you ever get tired of the same ol’ Christmas? You know – the Christmas filled with huge credit card bills, family arguments, exhaustion, and jealousy over gifts. It seems Christmas has turned into a more of a headache than an enjoyment. With advertisements promising fulfillment in consumer products to the fast paced whirlwind of a season, Christmas has lost its heart. With Santa Claus, elves on shelves, a Grinch, and reindeer, a worthwhile, life altering Christmas is distant at best.
This year, all I want for Christmas is a Christmas worth believing. I want to discover once again a Christmas which is believable because it transforms lives. I no longer want the phony Christmas masked in advertisements, garland, spice, and everything nice. I want a life altering Christmas; I want a Christmas which makes a real difference in the world. Too often the Christmas we experience is comparable to opening a gift thinking it is something we’ve always wanted, only to discover socks or bath towels inside. I want a Christmas worth believing.
Certainly this meaningful Christmas is grounded in the story of Jesus’ birth. But even this story gets lost in the fluff. Not only is this story washed out by all the other noise of Christmas, but the story itself is often sanitized. We imagine a very quaint Mary and Joseph with sweet, cooing baby Jesus and shepherds with really gentle quiet sheep. And of course they are all in the most sanitary shed you have ever seen.
Yet, such idealism prevents us from hearing the radical, life altering news of God’s Son being born in a feeding trough. Ironically, the news of his birth first reaches the poorest of the poor and outsiders not the people in the know. Jesus’ birth whose birth lifts up the nobodies like Mary and Joseph and makes the somebodies frightened. This Christmas overturns the world; and it is a Christmas for which I thirst this year. It is a Christmas worth believing.
I hope this is the kind Christmas you a longing for this year. I want to invite you in the season of Advent to join me as we begin a new Sermon series entitled, “A Christmas worth Believing.” This Christmas, we are going to tear away the fluff and try to hear God’s Good News of Jesus Son entering the world afresh and anew. My hope is we discover a Christmas worth our time, a Christmas worth believing, and a Christmas worth committing our lives.