Sermons

Summary: Everyone is looking for some good news. At Christmas we have the best news of all to share with people, the coming of the Messiah.

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WE NEED A LITTLE GOOD NEWS TODAY

LUKE 1:26-35JOHN 3:4-8

OUR WORLD HAS CHANGED MUCH OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS. CHRISTMAS WAS AN EXCITING TIME OF YEAR FOR YOUNG AND OLD ALIKE. IT WAS THE ONLY HOLIDAY THAT WE CELEBRATE AS A SEASON. AS CHILDREN WE WOULD GET DRESSED UP AND MEMORIZE OUR PARTS FOR THE SUNDAY SCHOOL CHRISTMAS CONCERT. I REMEMBER GOING DOWNTOWN TO ONE OF THE STORES EACH YEAR AND SITTING ON SANTA’S KNEE AND HE WOULD WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING WE WANTED FOR CHRISTMAS. I THOUGHT IT UNUSUAL THAT HE WOULD USE A BILL BOOK TO WRITE DOWN WHAT WE WANTED. I GUESS IT WAS PROPHETIC FOR LATER YEARS.

EACH YEAR MOM WOULD COOK DONUTS, AND MOLASSES AND OATMEAL COOKIES, BIG ONES WITH A RAISON IN THE MIDDLE. PUMPKIN, LEMON, AND BUTTERSCOTCH PIE, AND IF MY BROTHER GOT A DEER DURING HUNTING SEASON MINCEMEAT WOULD BE ON THE CUPBOARD. SHE WOULD WRAP THE GIFTS AND NANCY MY SISTER WOULD DECORATE THE TREE. LATE AT NIGHT I WOULD BE BY MYSELF AND TURN ON THE CHRISTAS LIGHTS AND HAVE A GLASS OF PEPSI.

WE’D OPEN OUR GIFTS THE NEXT DAY. IT WASN’T WHAT WE HAD TOLD SANTA, BUT IT DIDN’T MATTER. WE HAD SO MUCH FUN WITH WHAT HE BROUGHT THAT OUR LIST DIDN’T MATTER AT ALL. DAD WOULD OPEN HIS GIFTS AND REMARK THAT HE HAD SHIRTS JUST LIKE THE ONES WE HAD WRAPEED FOR HIM. WE CONVINCED HIM THAT THE ONES WE HAD TAKEN OUT OF HIS DRAWER AND REWRAPPED FOR HIM WERE NEW. TO THIS DAY I REALLY THINK WE FOOLED HIM.

I HAVE ALWAYS LOVED THE CHRISTMAS SEASON. EACH ONE IS SPECIAL TO ME, AND NOW THAT I CELEBRATE THEM WITH LESLIE ITS ALL I WANT.

I NOTICED NOW THAT THEY START PUTTING CHRISTMAS STUFF OUT IN STORES SOMETIMES BEFORE HALOWEEN. THAT’S ALL RIGHT WITH ME. THEY START PLAYING CHRISTMAS MUSIC EARLY IN NOVEMBER, AND I DON’T MIND THAT. I NOTICED THAT THEY STARTED WITH CHRISTMAS MOVIES ON TELEVISION BACK IN OCTOBER. I HAVE RECORDED SEVERAL AND HAVE BEEN WATCHING THEM AT NIGHT. THE CHEEZIER THE BETTER. IT’S PART OF THE CHRISTMAS TRADITION.

WHEN WE WERE HOME LAST YEAR THEY WERE TELLING OF HOW THEY TRIED TO INTRODUCE MY NEPHEW TO ELF ON THE SHELF. HE’S AN ELF WHO KEEPS TRACK OF HOW YOU BEHAVE AND INFORMS SANTA CLAUS.

WELL THEY PUT IT ON A SHELF AND TOLD CONNOR WHO HE WAS AND WHAT HE WAS THERE FOR. CONNOR REPLIED “I’M NOT WORRIED ABOUT HIM”. HIS PARENTS SAID “YOU’D BETTER BE CAREFUL. HE CAN CALL SANTA.” CONNOR REPLIED, “NO HE CAN’T HE’S NOT REAL.”

WELL THEY TRIED IT AGAIN AND THIS TIME THEY PUT A BROKEN CELL PHONE BESIDE HIM. AGAIN THEY TOLD CONNOR TO BE CAREFUL AND CONNOR REPLIED, “I’M NOT WORRIED FOR TWO REASONS, FIRST: HE’S NOT REAL, AND SECOND: HE CAN’T CALL SANTA CLAUS ON THAT CELL PHONE BECAUSE IT’S BROKEN AND DOESN’T WORK.”

CHRISTMAS IS A WONDERFUL TIME OF MIRACLES AND HAPPINESS, OF DECORATED CHRISTMAS TREES AND BRIGHT COLORED LIGHTS, AND OF OF BOWS AND WRAPPING PAPER. IT’S THE TIME OF THE WONDERFUL AROMA OF CHRISTMAS COOKING, AND HOT CHOCOLATE WITH WHIPPED TOPPING, PUMPKIN PIE, AND CANDY CANES. IT’S THE ONE TIME OF YEAR WHEN THE BAD THINGS SEEM TO TAKE A LESS IMPORTANT FOCUS.

WHILE THE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS IS CENTERED AROUND THE BIRTH OF CHRIST, IT IS NOT WRONG TO HAVE CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS THAT INVOLVE FAMILY AND FRIENDS, DECORATIONS, EVEN SANTA CLAUS HAS AN IMPORTANT PART TO PLAY IN CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS. THERE IS A COMMERCIAL ELEMENT VERY PRESENT IN CHRISTMAS, BUT IT IS ONLY THERE IF YOU LET IT BE THERE. ARGUABLY MOST OF US PUT MORE EFFORT AND EXPENSE INTO THE CELEBRATION OF CHRISTMAS THAN ANY OTHER HOLIDAY, RELIGIOUS OR OTHERWISE.


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