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home : opinion : opinion

12/19/2013 8:54:00 AM Email this articlePrint this article 
Blessings in Christmas and all the year, in Christ

By Tim Lamb

Invited to the First Christmas - The Bewildered Chosen

Nothing happens by accident. Nothing happens but what God allows. I believe God put Christmas where He did to bless us. The time of year and the weather ahead just cries for a blessing. We should celebrate Christmas to bless God. Let the secular holiday go - let them have fun - praise the Lord God for sending His Son that the Man could die for men and the God could raise for Gods glory.

The Christmas story is good for teaching any time of the year. It tells obviously of Immanuel, the day God became a man - the fulfillment of prophecy - our clear vision of God in Christ and the perfect plan of God unfolding in the victory of the Cross. But there is more...

In the Christmas story is the highly concentrated message of a theme consistent throughout scripture - the comforting profundity that God can and will use anybody to work His perfect will and the more inept the more He can use you.

Think of it! It begins with a teenage pregnancy and accusations of infidelity and adultery - questions of morality surround the birth of the Prince of Righteousness. A bewildering situation for a lower middle class family of average intellect and worry and doubt to adjust to while contemplating strange happenings such as visits from Gabriel and possibly another "Angel of the Lord"; Mary's Cousin Elisabeth giving birth in her advanced age and "visitations" involved with that; visitations of angels to the shepherd and later to the Magi reveal God's hand in the midst of a most unlikely assemblage of the common and the uncommon. After reading the Christmas story there is no excuse for the thought that God could not or would not use someone like you.

Imagine a young couple who dreamed of having a normal family and attending feasts and visiting the temple and suddenly they have an "illegitimate" son whose coming was heralded by angels. And the parents of the bride who anticipate the mob that will come for their pregnant daughter to stone her - their dreams of grandchildren seemingly snuffed out. 

But for whatever reason this was the entry God chose for the Savior of the world. And so God brings comfort to the couple and gives the Christ Child a full set of parents, filled with trepidation though they may be. He gets them out of town for a while with the census. There-by allowing the smoke to clear but where does God take them but a stable to complete the glorious occasion amongst animals and smelly, lowlife shepherds (and maybe a drummer boy but no proof to that legend). Who in attendance would have guessed that kings would eventually fret over that day.

So who in this story is special? Who came into this with special skills? Who among them thought themselves worthy of taking part in the event that would change mankind and his relationship with God forever? Who saw a "New Covenant" coming and said "I want a piece of this!"? But each was handpicked to attend the joyous event without the slightest idea why.

Why on earth did He choose such a motley crew to pull off this miraculous event? Perhaps to confuse the Devil? Perhaps to send a message to future followers of Christ that His greatest tool isn't power but grace and His most delicate plans require nothing more than a willing heart and a trusting soul. 

The Christmas story reminds us that our humble response to the calamities and confusion of life might just be God's great work being accomplished. Great things that confuse men change the world.

Tim Lamb writes The Message, a weekly Christian-based faith column, for the Chelan Mirror.zHe lives in Entiat.

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