Monday, December 16, 2013

God uses "Common"

As a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ I have told the story of the first Christmas many times. I have tried to look at the story from different angles, points of view, etc. and so on. We have heard the stories of the Magi and their gifts. The story of humble shepherds tending the flocks that belong to others. When I think of the shepherds my mind goes to countless Christmas programs with antsy and nervous little boys dressed as the shepherds and a cute little girl looking into the wooden manger at a baby doll.

This Christmas will be pretty much the same. We will sing the same carols, light  candles and give hugs. I am pretty well convinced that God is pleased with our feeble efforts. I will talk of the gifts brought to honor the Christ. And, how an evil ruler sought the death of Jesus.

Again, I will talk about the humble men working on the hillside tending sheep. What an image fills my mind when I picture the thousands of sheep on the spring hills. The sheep were waiting to be chosen as representatives for thousands of Jewish families as they prepared to celebrate the Passover.When Jesus was making his first public appearance as the Christ, John the Baptizer exclaimed, "Behold the Lamb of God who bears away the sin of the world."

God loves and uses the common and ordinary things, and people, in this world. Humble men of the outdoors listened to angels and walked to a stable. Lamps that burned olive oil, used by thousands, provided a faint glow in the stable area. The straw that every animal, in every stall, slept on, provided the cushion for the animals as well as the humble servants of God gathered in that birthplace of the glorious God incarnate.

The men of the earth found a very young mother and the child's father next to a stone, chiseled into the fashion of a feeding crib. The rectangular trough,fashioned with one end higher than the opposite with a hole chiseled through to hold fast the animal at the manger. In that manger was placed the Creator of all that was, is, and can be. His creation became his bed.

During the ministry of Jesus he stood in the temple and proclaimed to all with earshot that, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never be hungry." A feeding trough held him at his birth and even today He invites us to come and dine.

During His last earthly Passover he took bread and broke it and passed it to His friends. He said, "Take and eat, this is my body, broken for you. As often as you eat and drink, remember me."

Yes, this Christmas will be like all of the past celebrations. Thank God for the common, it is easy to remember and still be blessed.

No comments:

Post a Comment