Summary: A Christmas Day meditation, the gift of the child Jesus who continues to be a gift to those who will recieve him still.
Well eh Christmas day! Who here received a gift?
I remember when I was 8 years old I received what I had always wanted, I got a brand new Raleigh single speed bike, and it was blue with a white trim where the pipes were welded into the brackets, a black seat and chrome handles and painted blue mudguards that had a silver stripe down the middle and the rear one had a bit painted white where a red reflector was mounted and at the front just below the handle bars was an angle bracket where I could one day put a light, a special Raleigh symbol was riveted just above this, a blue chain guard, the actual handles and pedals were white, the tyres had the smell of new rubber, and that combined with the smell of clean oil on the new chain made my bedroom smell of bike. My bike it was a beut, my very own bike.
Wow my very own bike and with it came an independence, that I had not had before and speed the feel of wind in my face as I swooped down the hill on Nayland road, just incredible.
Don’t you just love stuff like that receiving gifts is great, we are told it is better to give than receive, yeah right! We are also told that it’s the thought that counts, I thought about getting you all a gift.
There is a sad finish to the story of my old bike, after many happy days together, many scratches, flat tyres, a set of bent forks from jumping the stairs at intermediate school and the arrival of a brand new shiny three speed Raleigh twenty, the old bike was passed down to my little brother and then stuck behind my dads workshop and then dumped many years later.
Last week you will remember that I spoke from a passage from the book of Isaiah, that part of that passage reads, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given…” (Isaiah 9:6a) As I talked about that last week it became clear that the person Isaiah was prophesying about was Jesus.
This baby boy that the shepherds, wise men, angels and his adoring parents doted over, this child who was loved and adored then as he is today, this Christmas day, was found as a grown man to be threat and a challenge to the existing thinking of the day.
This gift of a child as a man who made the blind to see and the lame to walk, this gift who showed mankind what the love that God has for us looks like and who showed us how to love one another, became a gift that was rejected and despised.
He too was broken and dumped.
But this man, this only begotten child of God rose from the grave…he continues to be a gift to those who will receive him still.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given.