When the backdrop falls apart, or the light flickers on and off, when a truck veers off the road and there is no frankincense or myrrh, or even when someone tries to steal Jesus at Christmas, the Love of Christ comes to us.
Apparently, Joy is rather subversive. Joy is always working in the background — always trying to redeem the heartache and the hurt.
Christmas is never an escape. Christmas deals with reality.
Jesus always saw the possibility for change, knowing that Light does shine in all darkness.
Courage can feel like we are trying to light a wet match, but since love cannot wait, neither can courage!
God’s hope and peace are similar, so we can get them confused because they are both rooted in the love of God! Hope, though, is our motivation; peace is our goal!
Advent is a season that slows us down so we can get our bearings, thinking through everything we do with greater care.
We can meet the harshness of this world with the gentleness of Christ by giving away one coat when we have two, by protecting others from being taken advantage of, and by treating others fairly and with compassion. This is the joy of Christ!
The only question left to ask is, “How should we respond?” It is the question at the very heart of Christmas. What are we to say standing there beside the manger? What are we to do in such a holy moment?
Advent is meant to slow us down, so we can reclaim Jesus, remembering what he said, what he did, and what he thought was important. We slow down to reclaim the joy of new life, which binds us to others.