At Christmas we really live it up! Decking the halls, rocking around the Christmas tree, and hoping Santa Claus is coming to town. Music fills the air and we can’t help to belt out a tune or at the least hum along and tap, tap, tap our toes to the rhythm. In fact all the senses are overloaded with smells from the kitchen, tastebuds bursting and begging for just one more crumb of culinary indulgences. Sparkly, shiny bling is everywhere you look! The fabrics we wear look royal and feel luxurious. MAN! Do I love this time of year…and it’s not just because we get to play dress up, fun as that is. It’s having our spirits ignited. Literally ablaze!
Despite our very best intentions to make the most special day on the calendar spectacular, it’s a mere foretaste of the feast to come in heaven. You think we go overboard? HA! Stretch your imagination well past its everyday limits and start to fantasize about Christmas in heaven. I would be over the moon to catch a glimpse into just a boring ol’ Monday in heaven! But Christmas in heaven – oh now that’s the kind of thing that I think will blow our minds no matter how many millennia we’ve been there. The crown room decorated somehow more magnificently than ever, the choir draped in their best golden robes, the angels infectiously adoring Him and praising Him and worshipping Him, the food abundant and irresistible, and our Father embracing us and showering us with love and affection forever and ever because we are finally in perfect union with Him. And can you even begin to imagine who would be singing in the Christmas choir? I mean Bach would only be ONE of the greats! Think about music that massaged your soul into bliss and set our sights on Jesus and Jesus alone! We’re talking the biggest celebration in a perfect paradise. I can honestly say I just can’t wait!
It’s also the time of the year that as we glance around our family’s dining tables, we miss those dear loved ones that have passed away. My friend Deb, who I met long ago in fourth grade, lost her sweet Nana around Christmas one year and with a heavy heart told me, “God picked her out as what He wanted for Christmas this year, so I’m going to be ok.” I know the year our Father in Heaven called our dear family friend Peter home, all I could think about the entire funeral service was how this would be the best Christmas he ever knew. I knew Peter wasn’t sobbing like I was, he was in an ecstasy our little lambs brains can’t begin to picture. A new friend I adore lost both grandparents over the past week and a half. She is a strong Christian, praise God! But how hard it must have been for her to see, hear, smell, touch and taste all this celebration as she mourns. But I thought how beloved this couple must have been to God in Heaven that they both got to enter our Father’s Kingdom hand in hand and experience the wonder and His Glory together. I pray she takes comfort in that.
Let’s go to church and experience Jesus’ bride in her very best décor and splendor. Let the red’s of the poinsettias delight your eyes and wow you with their bold colors. Think of the Holy Trinity as you see the evergreen in its finest tuxedo. Behold the lavish wreaths that serve as a reminder that God is the Alpha and the Omega with no beginning and no end. Let the powerful music MOVE you to action in the coming year. Pray for God to lay out a path that tells you how to serve Him FIRST. Adore the divine baby in a manger that came to save us all. Remain in the awe of the most fulfilling love story ever written – God’s word.
We prepare for and then celebrate our dear Savior’s birth and PRAISE GOD for loving us enough to lay Him down to do what we cannot. We lean into Christ Jesus and anticipate the feast to come where our soul’s fate is sealed. It will be the most remarkable family reunion we could ever hope to experience in paradise forever and ever. Enjoy the freedom and peace of living in the grace afforded us by Jesus. But remember, this isn’t it. Eternity is awaiting us overflowing with God’s love and Christmastime is a humbling reminder that God accomplishes what must be done in the most improbable settings. His will was to save you and me. Spread that glorious news this Christmas in all you do, say, think and model.
Oh yeah, and one more thing – I know somebody’s reading the blog because some software program tells me as much. Say hi. That would make my day! I’d love to know you better if you have a story to share – so DO tell. And if you’re not into typing comments into cyberspace – I get it. Until this blog neither was I. Send me a Christmas card to tell me how the blog’s working in your life. It will fuel and bless me as I try to serve you in this golden opportunity. Send it to:
Mount Olive Blog
c/o Mount Olive Lutheran Church
10408 Hwy 290 West
Austin, Texas 78736
ATTN: Lori Prehar
I’m wishing you a blessed Christmas and a 2013 filled with faith, love and hope.