Thursday, December 23, 2010

When Christmas Is Hard

I read a blog by Matt B. Redmond that, at first, seemed insensitive, but as I read further it really moved me. When we weep and mourn and struggle at Christmas, it can lead to a truer worship. In our lack, we see our need and can look to Jesus alone for our joy. Praise God He did not leave us in our sin and suffering but came to suffer and die Himself to save us. JOY is possible in our suffering this season and maybe even more real in our hearts because of it.
"Christmas—the great story of the incarnation of the Rescuer—is for everyone, especially those who need a rescue. Jesus was born as a baby to know the pain and sympathize with our weaknesses. Jesus was made to be like us so that in his resurrection we can be made like him; free from the fear of death and the pain of loss. Jesus’ first recorded worshipers were not of the beautiful class. They were poor, ugly shepherds, beat down by life and labor. They had been looked down on over many a nose.
-Jesus came for those who look in the mirror and see ugliness. 
-Jesus came for daughters whose fathers never told them they were beautiful.
-Christmas is for those who go to “wing night” alone.
-Christmas is for those whose lives have been wrecked by cancer, and the thought of another Christmas seems like an impossible dream.
-Christmas is for those who would be nothing but lonely if not for social media.
-Christmas is for those whose marriages have careened against the retaining wall and are threatening to flip over the edge.
-Christmas is for the son whose father keeps giving him hunting gear when he wants art materials.
-Christmas is for smokers who cannot quit even in the face of a death sentence.
-Christmas is for prostitutes, adulterers, and porn stars who long for love in every wrong place.
-Christmas is for college students who are sitting in the midst of the family and already cannot wait to get out for another drink. 
-Christmas is for those who traffic in failed dreams.
-Christmas is for those who have squandered the family name and fortune—they want “home” but cannot imagine a gracious reception.
-Christmas is for parents watching their children’s marriage fall into disarray.

Christmas is really about the gospel of grace for sinners. Because of all that Christ has done on the cross, the manger becomes the most hopeful place in a universe darkened with hopelessness. In the irony of all ironies, Christmas is for those who will find it the hardest to enjoy. It really is for those who hate it most."


Anonymous said...

Very Interesting Ginny... a good read n food for was funny this year at Christmas..I really didnt care what was under the tree, all i could think of was "Jesus the gift"..I had a packaged wrapped in the perfect paper on the door, and the whole middle missing of paper..with my wooden cross in the middle w/a bow on it..Some ppl 'got it' right away..some didnt lol ... This is one Christmas we wont soon forget, on several levels ") (btw i dont know what to put on this profile thing, for identity of the comment) so i put Theresa D.

Ginny said...

neat idea, theresa!

i think we have this tendency to make it about family (maybe sometimes about stuff, too) and so if family isn't with us, Christmas is awful... yet, really, Christmas (though awesome to spend with family) is to remind us and point us back to God's love for us shown in Jesus. I was encouraged to read this and be drawn back (especially as we spent our first Christmas away from all our family and friends)....

How cool that God showed you the very same thing! LOVE how He does that. so thankful for your friendship:)

Anonymous said...

< huge smile >.. dunno exactly how this happened, but our house, the other houses, the shiny stuff, all the bright lights, the anticipation of Christmas morning..just didnt have that 'old magic', it was SOoo so different..truly a different 'magic'and i was SOoo engrossed in sending the gifts i had gotten for my sister and my nephew n all their children in Georgia n Alabama,(they were in bad shape) its what made me really never before..n like most ppl i Sooo love the giving..this was just different.. and its so weird cuz so many stupid things were going on lol.. yeah, God's really kewl n the HOLY Spirit had me covered ! Love n hugggz, Theresa