A few things happening around this season conjured up this post.
December of course, is about Christmas - so a reckoning of faith, celebration, busyness.
It is also about a year coming to an end - so a reckoning of things done, and undone.
For me, it's also about remembering my mother and brother with whom i have no means, technologically or otherwise to connect with and actually chat with.
It's also a time when some venture forth across the borders to live differently and bring goodwill to others. My church had a team that went to Cambodia, many for the first time; and Cambodia of course is a nation still recovering from abject darkness, the years of recovering from it not unlike the pockmarked streets and the scorching sun: uneven and trying.
So this post is for:
> the mission trippers who witnessed such outrageous, unexplainable evil, rampant, chronic poverty, and lived with far less than you ever had....or those missing bits of yourself.... Your hearts breaking beyond your control.
> the parents, leaders & children who as 2015 closes are feeling exhausted, drained, disappointed.... Your hearts stone-heavy and barely able to register a different rhythm.
> For those who are a lil frantic over the festivities.... Your heart bobbing in waters of uncertainty: who to get gifts for, where to eat and more.
Here we are:
A broken and sick world
A slap-together, try-to/get-by life
A demanding season
Is exactly what Jesus enters into.
He did not visit, stop by, or hovered near. He entered it.
God has never once left this world He made so beautiful; but to be sure we get it; Jesus comes in human form -- right into this madness, mess, morass, moral vacuum.
And his coming was heralded as God's GoodWill towards our kind.
God desires good for us. And not just a good life of relative ease. But a life of His Goodness oozing forth from our pores even when we cannot see how and don't feel the least bit of it.
But - someone wants to fool us, pull the wool over our eyes, sidetrack us, set us back, defeat us.
He makes evil loom so large
He makes the journey feel so hard
He makes the glitter shine so bright
Yes, lose sight, lose steam, lose your steering wheel .... and drift... so that...
we are no threat to darkness for it has shrouded us and cowered our minds.
we are not able to triumph for the hard realities of life have deflated us and maybe even embittered us.
we are not sure what to focus on and pay a price for because there's so much we want and everything is clamouring, 'buy, try, taste, don't lose out!'.
"what is seen was not made out of what was visible" ~ Hebrews 11v3
There is a difference between what is seen and what is visible.
In the verse it refers immediately to God's creation work: He made things out of nothing - Ex nihilo they say it in Latin.
And doesn't it seem like nothing, non-existent, doggone impossible?
Can bones live?
Can a nation heal?
Can I make it through this long painful journey?
Can I release my grip on everything and cling only to Christ this Christmas?
This season of faith: being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see ~v1
Jesus stands before us, and asks,
"What is frightening you?""What is draining you?""What is distracting you?"
Tell it to him. Then ask for a better picture.
The entire account in Hebrews 11 is of folks who saw a picture that wasn't apparent, obvious, ready. But they saw it and they acted and built their lives around it. That's faith.
This season of faith: be more sure of what to hope for and be certain about.
2016 won't be the same.