The Herald - January 2020
We are back at work. Life has returned to normal. Lights that adorned houses in my neighborhood
since Halloween are now extinguished. Christmas music has gone silent. Stores are advertising Valentine’s
Day. And it’s only the sixth day of Christmas. It feels like it all went so fast, a brief flash of silent
light and then business as usual
Without candles and the singing, it’s a bit more difficult to open ourselves to the miraculous, indwelling
of Christ, Emmanuel, God-with-us. It feels like ordinary life, which, of course, is what Jesus came to:
Life. It is not our Christmas card picture of life, but real, every-day regular life. It is not even a comfortable
life but the life of a homeless refugee family.
Here’s the real miracle of Christmas: In and through the Christ Child, God is besides us and within us
and for us all the time. Remember John the Gospel writer’s Christmas message for us:
What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people.
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. – John 1:4-5
In receiving this life and light, Johns says that we have received grace upon grace.
Thank you for the ways you have channeled this grace, one with another, in our holy days and holidays
and ordinary, challenging days. Whatever our resolutions, and whatever this year brings, live in the joy
that God is with us. This grace is sufficient, it is enough. Now we can get on with the living of these
days, feeding the hungry, sharing peace with the troubled, welcoming the stranger --- or whatever else
those who are least among us may from time to time require.
I am thankful for this moment. I will use it as an Advent exercise. “Come, Lord Jesus,” I will pray. Then
in the hushed reverence, I will listen, for a full minute.
+Pastor Steve Klemz
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ZION EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH
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