I thought of the “first” family or the “best” family or even the “heavenly” family as I contemplated Christmas this year. The thing is though I couldn’t keep from thinking about Christmas and something called Advent. Originally, I was planning to press on with our study in Romans right up to December 24th. But the reality of the Christmas message and its significance kept surfacing in my mind and heart. We can’t race through Christmas with all its fluff and surrounding festivities. If we do so the cultural insanity of consumerism, Santa Claus and chaos will take over. Not on my watch. The miracle of Christmas comes to life in three people who form a family that is actually rather ordinary.
This past Sunday my daughter and her husband dedicated their 4 month old infant to the Lord during our Sunday morning worship. It was a thrill for me as a grandpa and a pastor. Someone visited with Sam, my son-in-law, about the blessing of the dedication. The person said it seemed like you were Joseph and Mary with Jesus in your arms since the Christmas decorations also filled the stage. That sounds good except Joylynn is a girl. It was a nice compliment, of course. And, quite frankly, it got me thinking about the Christmas family — Mary, Joseph and Jesus. This Advent let’s pull back the curtain of time and visit the miracle family of Bethlehem who actually are quite ordinary indeed.
Beginning December 10th we will get re-acquainted with this “heavenly” family who seems to be very “earthy;” especially human which is exactly what God intended. They still speak to us today. May this be an Advent to remember! What do you appreciate about Advent?