The Beauty of December

When it comes to the approaching holidays, C.S. Lewis wasn’t much on the frenzied consumerism of Christmas, but he called the birth of Jesus Christ “the central event in the history of the earth.” That’s quite a statement. I share it with you now that December has knocked on our door, and my hope is simply this: that you and I not miss the moment.

You see, friends, we can miss the moment while trying to find the moment. This time of year has a habit of deflecting our vision in such a way that the twinkling lights seem brighter than the Light of the world.

I urge you to notice the spectacular change of seasons. If we lived in Miami, we might not be able to take in as much of God’s December artwork, but you and I have no excuse to miss it here. The migrating birds. The icicles protruding from the rock formations. The soon-coming snow.

I urge you to notice the places of needed grace. All around us are neighbors who are struggling and suffering. I always say that there’s pain in every pew. Christmas may feel like a time of indulgence for some, but for many it’s a painful reminder of what they’re missing: a loved one, a job, or a happier day gone by. For those of us in the body of Christ, this ought to be a time of intentional and incarnational ministry (we’re privileged to serve as Christ’s hands and feet).

I urge you to notice the sunsets. Simple but profound. Last night’s was extraordinary in fact, with its billowy pastel cloud formations, as Lone Oak Road appeared to be wandering off into colorful Narnia. All you have to do is open your eyes.

And, while you’re at it, I urge you to notice the smiles on the faces of the children with whom we’re privileged to share the season. For the little ones in our midst, these are special moments indeed. Show up. Be present. Give eagerly of yourself. We will blink, and they will be grown.

And early December means that winter will soon prevail. Just today I added a heavy coat to the supplies in the trunk of my car. We might have to bundle up, but let’s not miss a single opportunity to behold the glory of God. Of winter’s unique display of God’s grandeur and majesty, and also His providential care for us, Nichole Nordeman sings:

Everything in time and under heaven
Finally falls asleep
Wrapped in blankets white, all creation
Shivers underneath
And still I notice You
When branches crack
And in my breath on frosted glass
Even now in death, You open doors for life to enter …

Here’s the thing: strangely but surely, buried beneath the coldest and starkest landscape, is the certain promise of spring. “It’s Friday, but Sunday’s comin’!” The glories of resurrection are as real now as ever.

So while we wait on all things to be made new (Revelation 21:5), savor these moments of beautiful December. They are spectacular moments, as is the God who grants them to us, one by one. And savor the Savior who has come to earth: HE IS CHRIST THE LORD.

Pastor Charles

Posted in Blog Posts
One comment on “The Beauty of December
  1. Clara Faye Downs says:

    You write so beautifully! I so enjoy reading your posts and marvel at the pictures you paint with the written word. Thank you and keep on writing!

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