Monday, December 21, 2009

Monday Morning Musings ...

Yesterday was what is generally considered Christmas Sunday in most churches. The Sunday before Christmas day is the normal Christmas Sunday, many people show up for church who don't normally attend throughout the year and seem to all come on that Sunday. That is not how it seems to work around here. We don't really have one Christmas Sunday, but rather the month of December in it's entirety is a Christmas month. Which means we don't have any one Sunday that is the big one, but some of those who rarely attend drift in throughout the month. The positive is that we have an opportunity each Sunday to really reach people who do not normally attend.

Yesterday was an okay day. The pastoral staff provided a buffet of pastries for the congregation as our gift to the church and a way to say thanks. People really enjoyed this and my wife did a great job of organizing this, I set up the table and cut up a few items.

The church gave the pastoral staff Christmas gifts. It was fun to see one of my Associate's little guy tear into his present and then get upset when it was time to go back and sit down, he was afraid the present wasn't coming with him. We received a nice card and money, that is always helpful. We usually try to purchase something that we can continue to look at through the years and remember the gift from that Christmas.

I continued my series on The Songs of Christmas. We contrasted "Here Comes Santa Claus" and "Away in a Manger". What difference in these songs. Both speak of the coming of someone, but the arrivals are much different. The myth of Santa and the miracle of Jesus. One with a lot of noise and one quietly. One calling much attention to self and the other almost without notice at the time of his arrival. One bringing temporary happiness and taking credit for things he didn't do and one offering eternal life and joy and not receiving credit for all he does. We looked at what Christmas is not about, location, status and selfish wishes. We looked at what Christmas is really all about, Jesus Christ the Savior born to you, about your relationship with Him and about noticing and caring for others.

I have really enjoyed studying for this series and people seem to be engaged and following well in this series.

Sunday evening I had a time for people to dorp in and take communion. They came as families, as friends or individually. I pointed out the contrast of Christmas with the focus on birth and communion with the reminder of Christ's death. But Jesus was literally born to die, so that we might have life eternally. I then prayed over each of those who received communion. There has never been a large number who do this at this church, but it seems to be meaningful to those do participate.

Here's hoping you have a great Christmas and remember that Jesus is the reason for the season.


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