Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

‘Twas the day after Christmas and all thru the apartment,
Not a triple A battery could be found in any compartment.
The gift wrap was trashed, the new socks thrown aside,
To look for electronics and a new Segway to ride.
In the air was the smell of deviled eggs and spoiled egg nog,
Clad in dirty PJs, Dad stumbled around in an apple pie induced fog.
The elf on the shelf silenced and boxed up for another year,
The leftover green bean casserole would soon disappear.
A stack of gift cards waiting to be spent.
The first toy already broken and bent.
When all the tinsel is gone, the true meaning is still here.
Hope is born, peace unleashed, love casts out fear.

The cast of the Christmas story are a pretty diverse group, everything from farm animals to angelic host. There were even bedazzled mysterious Wise men. They were Influential men of means. They were dignified and they brought gifts! They were important enough that they got the attention of King Herod. They were VIPs, so it’s really not a surprise that these blinged out star gazers got invited to the first Christmas party. But they weren’t the first to get invited or show up. In fact, the wise men were fashionably late to the party. They didn’t meet sweet little baby Jesus in a manger. They, probably, showed up after a year or two after the Nativity and met sweet little TODDLER Jesus. That is just proof that when God shows up the party can go on for a while!

The first to get an invite were…brace yourself… a bunch of smelly sheep herders!

WHAAA? What will the neighbors think?!

Shepherds were the first to hear about the Savior!

Shepherds were burly, socially awkward outsiders.

They lived their lives like gypsies or carnival workers.

They sure didn’t get invited to parties!

They were the overlooked and overworked. They were the minimum wage workers who did the dirty work.

They lived on the fringes…with sheep. (Have you ever smelled a sheep? It’s nasty. Ever tried to carry on a conversation with sheep? It’s awkward.)

The shepherds never got invited to parties. They were never welcome at big, important events.

They would screw things up. They would do or say the wrong thing. They smelled like sheep. They were a walking talking social faux pas. They were simply not welcome.

YET…these are the first ones to get the message from heaven

The Savior is here…there is reason to celebrate…AND…


This was probably the first party they got invited to.

The BIGGEST news of ALL time was delivered for the FIRST time…in a pasture!

The BIG news was not delivered to BIG people, not the high and mighty, politically powerful, rich and famous…it was delivered to the disenfranchised…the last and the least.

Then it filtered its way UP…God is backwards like that!

I think inviting the shepherds was God’s way of thumbing His nose at man-made social rules and expectations.

“For God so loved the WORLD.”

that seems pretty clear.

The kingdom is for shepherds and wise men, homecoming queens and wallflowers, freaks and geeks, insiders and outsiders, rebels and rogues, the popular and the polarized….

“Every kindred, every tribe on this terrestrial ball”.

It’s for pretty much EVERYbody. You AND that guy that you don’t agree with.

The Kingdom of God is wide open.

The velvet rope has been torn down, trampled on and thrown out.

It’s a party for you, me and that guy over there…

The Savior is here…there is reason to celebrate…AND…


Don’t miss it!

I have a rather serious confession to make that might cost me a punch on my man card. During this holiday season I’m pretty sure that I have watched 87 Hallmark Christmas movies. It’s not that I’m a big fan of festive romantic comedies, my tastes run more towards something with zombies or Stormtroopers. But, my wife enjoys romance movies. I enjoy my wife. I really enjoy just spending time with her, so we watch movies with titles like: “Straight from Somewhere near the Heart”, “Love Comes with Some Assembly Required”, “Monster Trucks and Mistletoe” and the ever popular “A Spleen Transplant for Christmas”.

After watching approximately 174 hours of this Noel niceness, I’ve figured out that most of these stories are pretty similar in storyline.

There is a girl (played with a great deal of seriousness by a former child star). She has her life all figured out. (School/promising career/ predictable, very successful boyfriend). But then, usually through a comic mishap, girl meets boy (he’s the free spirit with no visible means of support. He has dreamy eyes, a flannel shirt and a heart of gold) at first, they don’t get along at all (that’s how you know that they are perfect for each other).

There is usually a dog, nosy best friend or adorable child involved, and since it’s a holiday movie, sometimes there is an actual angel trying to help them make a love connection.

Just when it seems like they are about to hook up, there is a crazy misunderstanding. The boy overhears something or the selfish EX comes back into the picture. The boy decides to take off and sacrificially move across the country. He doesn’t want to stand in the way of the girl’s happiness. Little does he know that HE is the secret to her happiness!

The angel or dog or nosy best friend works extra hard to get them back together. THEN…at the last minute, when it seems like all hope is lost, the boy demonstrates his unconditional love by going to great lengths.

And…BOOM…love conquers all!

it’s all set to a soundtrack of schmaltzy Christmas music.

I gotta confess, even with a lack of explosions, I have secretly enjoyed watching these movies.

There is something undeniably attractional about a movie about attraction.

Maybe it’s because that’s how we were wired. We were designed to be a part of a love story.

the script was written by a Creator that is so completely smitten with His creation that He is willing to go to any lengths to prove His love.

“For God so LOVED the world that He gave…”

The Christmas story is the greatest, CRAZIEST love story EVER.

Think about it, in a small town, there was this sweet, innocent girl named Mary. She has her life all figured out. It’s all very predictable, she is going to marry her fine, upstanding, business owner fiancée, Joseph. They will settle down, raise some honor students and live a safe, reputable life. But then, girl meets Holy Spirit and everything gets turned upside down. There is an actual angel involved. There is a crazy misunderstanding between her and Joseph…”you’re WHAT?” Joseph decides to listen to the angel and sacrificially takes Mary across the country. Little does he know that baby is the secret to EVERYBODY’s happiness!

God demonstrates his unconditional love by going to great lengths.

And…BOOM…love conquers all.

Christmas is the celebration of the single greatest act of crazy love ever!

The meaning of Christmas is inclusion by means of incarnation.

It is a divine wooing…a holy invitation…the Creator’s kiss.

The only response to a love so strong is surrender.

You were made for Him.

Throw yourself into His arms.

Lose yourself in a love that won’t be denied…a love stronger than death.

A love that conquers all.

That’s the story of…

That’s the glory of love.