It’s a Saturday night and we’re supposed to head to Chicago in one week for our 14th Annual Chicago Christmas.
But I’m sitting here praying, listening to Christmas music, and waiting to hear from my wife about our middle son, Kurt. He had another seizure tonight. They seem to be coming every 6-8 months now. They are at the emergency room and my other two sons and I are in the living room waiting. They are snoozing and I’m trying to keep my mind focused on Christ and His love for me and Kurt and all of us.
The song that just came on is probably my favorite this season – the First Noel performed by W.G. “Snuffy” Walden on the guitar.
The First Noel the angels did say. But Noel continues on and we say it now. The angels first announced the coming of our savior but every since then, the proclamation on the message has been left up to us.
The shepherds who heard the angels’ Noel took up the message and shared it. And Christians are called to share the Noel now.
“Go into all the world,” Jesus said.
We do this in a lot of different ways. I do it nearly every week through sermons preached and blogs and devotions written. But I also proclaim “Noel” through my life, through my speech, my love, my parenting, and everything I do – sometimes frightfully inadequately.
Today, I need to be reminded of that more powerfully. That’s why I typed up and printed out the phrase from John 12:21, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.” I printed it out twice. I taped one on my laptop so I see it every time I use the computer. I taped the other one on the steering wheel of my car. I also two I taped a couple of months ago on my monitor at work and on the pulpit in my church.
Showing people Jesus through our lives is how we say “Noel” to the world. At this time of year, “Noel” is exactly what they – and I – need to hear. Christ entered our world. He became a human being while still being fully God for the purpose of living the perfect life (that we couldn’t live) and then also taking our sins on Himself and dying on a cross as well as being damned by God. He lived so that we would not die eternally. He took on flesh and blood so He could give up that flesh on the cross and spill that blood to obtain our forgiveness.
This world needs this message. In the midst of seizures and other sicknesses. In the face of death and other tragedies. When we are fearful of foreclosure and other despair, we need to hear that Christ is born and that God loves us.
The first noel the angels did say, but we say it now and need to hear it now.
Noel, Noel. Born is the King of Israel – and all of us.