Jesus gifts us with joy no matter our Christmas expectations.
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“And the angel said to them,
‘Fear not, for behold,
I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.'”
Luke 2:10 English Standard Version
T’is the season for expectations.
We might expect a white Christmas, a peaceful Christmas, or a joy-filled Christmas. It’s hard to enter this time of year without expectations.
Some of our expectations might be positive while others might be negative. Our expectations might be based on what we hope to happen or on what has actually taken place in the past. We might anticipate being let down once again this Christmas because of the past, or we might expect great things because of promises made.
We will realize some of our expectations while others may not come to pass. The snow might be absent, yet the Christmas gathering of family and friends will be a happy occasion.
Whether our expectations are met or not, our joy at Christmas is always the same. Our joy is in the reality that our God entered human history in human flesh, a baby born that we might live. This baby is born that we might experience peace that the world cannot give us. This baby is born to promise us forgiveness, reconciliation, and redemption. This baby is our life.
We might or might not be happy after the decorations are removed, yet the joy of the angel’s words will ring in our ears from that night of our Savior’s birth, a joy that is for everyone, a joy that is meant for you and me. This joy is rooted in the baby and the grace that comes from his cross and empty tomb.
No matter what happens, you can be sure of the gift of joy that comes from hearing the story of our Lord’s nativity.
Picture and text copyright Douglas P Brauner