Saturday, December 24, 2011
He is not here
"He is not here, but He has risen."
I'm a mom and now, I am a grandmother. My grand babies were here tonight. We put them to bed while we watched a movie with their parents. After the movie ended, I quietly lifted Ashley from the crib to put her jacket on for the drive home and I looked into that sweet face and thought of Jesus. Baby Jesus.
What could His mother have felt, holding the Son of God in her arms?
Mary always seems to have had a soberness about her. Could it be because she understood Jesus' plan? Remember when Simeon held baby Jesus, just eight days old, and he looked into Mary's eyes and said, "A sword will pierce even your own soul..."? Did she know?
Jesus...as a baby - a remarkable thought. We are studying Him in church, going through the book of Mark. What a man! What a God! But thinking of Him as a baby touches this grandmother's heart. I know the whole story and for a moment, my heart ached because of the sacrifice this baby would make for me.
And then I remembered.
Jesus is not dead. He's alive! I do not have to mourn for the baby who would grow and live and heal and teach and love and die - Christmas is a true celebration because the baby is still alive! The ache is gone and the joy has filled the place of sorrow! Our story is like no other story ever told - yes, there is sacrifice, rejection and suffering, but it didn't end there. It ended with an empty tomb and a living, breathing Savior! Praise the Lord!
My dear friends, as you celebrate this Christmas with your family, remember the baby and remember the empty tomb! If your heart aches, let it ache over your sin. But set your mind on the whole truth of the story - it didn't begin in a manger. It began before the creation of the world, when God chose to give His Son a specific people to call His own. The Son was willing to give His life for these people and then defeated death, giving hope to the hopeless that we will one day live for eternity in perfect communion with our Lord and Risen Savior, Jesus Christ!
Merry Christmas to all of you and may Jesus Christ be the foundation of your homes, your words, your thoughts, your actions, your relationships and your hope.
Oh, and one more thing...I've been sworn to secrecy until Christmas to share this but...well...I'd better wait until it's actually Christmas or Katherine will kill me...