Many of our Christmas holidays throughout the years are focused almost strictly on tradition. We listen to the same songs, by a different artist if we’re feeling edgy, make the same recipes, exchange gifts in the same way, hang our stockings, watch our shows, decorate our trees, over and over again. Christmas can be so methodical and yet, there is something special about doing things the same way, because that’s the way they’ve always been done. We find joy and comfort in the unchanging aspects of Christmas; despite how much our lives change in between each year.
But maybe, for you, this year seems a lot different because things have changed so drastically. The old traditions, recipes, and rituals just aren’t doing it for you this year. Perhaps the song you’re singing is “Where are you Christmas” because you wonder where the joy has gone. Things aren’t the way they used to be and they will never be the same again. Where do you go from here?
One of the really cool things about the Bible is that it is a collection of stories. In these stories, we hear a lot about things being lost and then found. What is so gripping about these stories is that the familiar routines haven’t disappeared in things that change, but that we get to find new joy and meaning in new things that come to help us remember the old.
Maybe you’re in a spot this year where you aren’t sure you’ll ever even get your faith back, let alone other things in your life that you’ve lost along the way. Can I offer you an invitation?
I love Christmas, but I love the Church a lot more. In this season of “giving” we, as a church among many others in Santa Clarita, want to give back to the community in a special way. Despite everything that changes around us and all that we have reason to mourn, The Church is a place where we can paint a picture of hope and light in the midst of darkness and pain. The biggest thing we want to convey is the story of Christmas, this beautiful love story of heaven breaking silence for 400 years and speaking to the world through the birth of the child-Savior from a teenage girl; a story where hope was lost, but was finally found again.
I challenge you to let that be the story of your faith this year. Find a church near you or one that your friends or family attend, and go to their Christmas service and let yourself be surprised. Give it a shot. We constantly have to make new recipes to our old traditions if they are to survive and our faith is the same way. So how are you blending your traditions or expectations of old with the present circumstances of your life? There are many churches in this community that would be more than happy to help you through that process.
By Pastor Rusty George
Real Life Church