December 24

Luke 2:8-14

“But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.’” vss. 10-11

Many people, even those whose faith is sketchy, try to make time for going to church on Christmas Eve. It’s a family ritual and, along with a traditional meal and opening gifts, is a “must do” for the holiday. And while they might not see their action as worship, there is for some a deeper meaning. They may not believe in angels or virgin births, but they can’t help but hear good news in the gospel. The message is as clear as the Christmas bells: what happened in Jesus is for all the people! In him the Messiah, the Word of God, became incarnate and divine love is poured out upon all flesh. It’s sad that regular worship is not habitual for such Christman/Easter types, but it’s wonderful that on this night they do hear that angelic proclamation of God’s unconditional love. And when stray tears are seen in their eyes as they sing “Silent Night” we know that the Spirit of God has been present and that love has touched their hearts. What a blessing Luke has given in his birth story of Jesus! Through its images of sleeping shepherds and singing angels the message of God’s love is made crystal clear and will persist for all generations.

Thought for the Day: What feelings do I have when I hear Luke’s birth story?

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