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Photo by Arron Choi on Unsplash

Photo by Arron Choi on Unsplash

Scurrying, hurrying, rushing, crushing,
Stressed and harassed.
Where is the joy in the coming of Christ?

Our to-do lists are massive.
The gifts are being given.
Are they given from the heart?
Or to impress?

We overspend our dollars, time, energy…
On what?  Things that will be in the trash in a few years.
In the end we aren’t experiencing the joy at Jesus’ coming.

It is more often exhaustion at the end of a huge race…
The holiday rat race!
It has nothing to do with the true meaning of Christmas!

That first Christmas was stunning in its simplicity.
The night He was born it was quiet and peaceful.
A woman was giving birth in a stable.

Hardly front page news
In an overcrowded city like Bethlehem that year.
Yes, a few shepherds did come looking for Him,

But they were not from the right group of society.
In fact, they were outcasts.
In a busy, noisy city, I’m not sure they were the kind of influencers one would choose for a cause.

It was noisier out there on the field when the angel chorus showed up.
Noisy in many ways!
Think how bright and startling they must have been against that dark sky.

The shepherds must have been scared to death!
Their peaceful night was suddenly interrupted by angels!
“Fear not,” was a needed warning. “A Child is born.”

Once the angels started singing, “Glory to GOD!”
How glorious it must have been…
in a very fearful, stomach-quivery way.

For me, at Christmas, somewhere, somehow,
I have to make time for quiet.
So the noise of the holiday doesn’t drown out GOD’s still small voice.

And in despair I bowed my head:
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For  hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, goodwill to men.

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“GOD is not dead: nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, goodwill to men.

vss. 3-4 of I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

by Henry Longfellow

The final chapter hasn’t played out yet.
Jesus’ Birth in Bethlehem was the beginning of the answer
That was promised back in Genesis when Adam and Eve first sinned.

A time is coming when there will be peace on earth.
All that is broken and ill, will be mended and healed.
All that is unjust will be judged by the righteous Judge.

Evil will be destroyed.  Righteousness will win.
GOD, The King Immortal, Invisible, All-glorious will be the Victor!

This was originally written in 2013.