Comfort + Joy
I love Christmas, most of us do! I love taking all the baubles out and reliving memories whilst decorating the tree; inviting friends and family and spending quality time and stepping away from the timetable for a couple of days/weeks. I love the lead up and the finale of the Christmas dinner! All alongside the gentle hum of Christmas Carols and the true reason for Christmas.
God rest you merry, gentlemen,
Let nothing you dismay,
For Jesus Christ our Saviour
was born upon this day
To save us all from Satan’s power,
when we were gone astray
O tidings of Comfort and Joy, Comfort and Joy
O tidings of comfort and joy.
Carols for choirs (1961)
Based on Luke 2 (a unique chapter in that it covers Jesus’ life, even before birth – to his adult ministry)
BUT…How do you feel when the decorations come down? When the tree is put away or given to hospice! The recycling is overflowing with cards and bottles. Is there a sadness? Do you miss the jingle bells? Do you get the Christmas blues?
I feel like I’m constantly ‘breathing in’ over the Christmas period and when it’s over – I finally get to breathe out! When the decorations come down - the house feels bigger and the rooms look bare. I relish in it! There’s a feeling of space, emptiness – room to breathe. Unfussy with a familiar stillness.
It’s like comparing two Christmas’: busyness, noise, tinsel, baubles and festive lights juxtaposed to the still, quiet stable, simple manager and humble family that Christ was born in to. Amazing things, life changing things happen in the quiet and ordinary.
As followers of Christ, we are called to walk with him every day, to listen to his voice and follow his lead. It is empowering to know that Jesus came to save us - bring comfort and Joy.
John 15 is about being connected to Christ, verse 11 – “I have told you this so that my joy may be with you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.’ The Joy of Christmas continues, and comfort of being connected to Christ remains. Alongside this is the mission to step out in the ordinary, the routine, to seek Christ in the everyday situations we find ourselves in is brought back in to focus – to Love each other.
So, as we move in to the new year let’s not forget the celebrations of salvation but add the ordinary, the everyday. Really listen, live in the moment and celebrate and serve Christ in the little things and spread the love.