Monday, December 26, 2016

Jesus, after Christmas

Dear Christa—

The angels and shepherds were gone. The magi had returned to their country in the east. The wild journey to Egypt was over, and Joseph and Mary settled back into the town they knew best, Nazareth.

Christmas was over.

Joseph worked and Mary raised children. Days became busy. Did it become easy to forget all the events that surrounded the first Christmas?

So, what do we do with God once Christmas is over?

Do we set Him on a shelf like any other gift? Do we pray to him morning, noon, and night with little more expectation than an old pagan idol made with human hands? What do we do with God after Christmas?

After last Christmas we purchased a cute ceramic nativity scene on clearance. The only problem with it is that baby Jesus tends to slide out of his manger. It seems like I’m always putting that one inch Jesus back in his manger bed.  I’m afraid that’s where many desire to keep God—in a manger, a little baby.

But, God is not a baby in a manger. He’s the Creator and Savior of the whole universe. How do we plan to know God better this year? I would suggest one begin in Isaiah. Isaiah describes God a way that I think is so easy to forget. It’s good for us, for me, to move from the concept of a baby to the all-powerful Creator and Designer of each moment in the universe.   

Then, maybe the real question isn’t what will we do with God after Christmas.

Maybe the real question is—

What will God do with me?

—the parishioner who doesn’t do anything

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