Each year we seem to add to our Christmas celebration with decorations, lights, events, etc. as we try to create the perfect Christmas. But maybe it’s time to subtract. For 2,000 years we’ve added so many trappings to Christmas that the reality has gotten lost and our lives are “distanced” from where it all began.
Our family lives close to Bethlehem, a quaint city in eastern Pennsylvania where Christmas is celebrated today with all its trappings. But as I contemplate all that I enjoy when visiting the “Christmas City”, I’ve come to realize that I’m at a greater distance from the reality of the first Bethlehem – the “hometown” of King David. An obscure village where this “heaven shattering” Advent became reality. God showed His face. Quietly, without fanfare, without lights or halos or shimmering yellow straw, a little baby is born. God came in real live flesh so we could see, feel, hear, and experience Him in a personal way. God closes the gap in the weakest, frailest manner as a baby, human, one of us.
Think about it. It’s a crazy way for God Almighty, the Creator of the universe to “bridge the distance” between mankind and Himself. But it’s brilliant. God is seen and experienced face to face. The distance is closing.
Take some time to dig beneath your Christmas festivities. Unearth the simplicity of an obscure birth in an out of the way village which changes the course of mankind. Walk yourself back to Bethlehem and close the gap between you and God.
Luke 2:10-11 (NLT) but the angel reassured them (the shepherds). “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!
Matthew 1:21,23 (NLT) And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and he will be called Immanuel (meaning, God is with us).
Thrive Leadership Foundation