Saturday, December 20, 2014
Christmas is a season of great expectations.Children get excited about what presents will await them on Christmas morning. Families get prepared -and stressed- over the expectations of the holidays; having the house decorated just right; the perfect Christmas dinner; and the arrival of relatives.
Sometimes, our expectations exceed reality. We get disappointed when this happens and fail to see the good, the blessings that surround us.
In ancient times, the nation of the Jews had great expectations as well. they longed for a king that would lead them. More specifically, they wanted a warrior king that would help them throw off the oppression of their Roman occupiers and lead them to prominence and greatness.
Contrary to the expectations, a king did come, but not in power, grandeur, and as a warrior.There was no coronation as a king in the worldly sense.
Instead, the new king came in simplicity and in less than kingly circumstances.
Born in a manger among the farm animals not to royalty but to common parents, the king came as a vulnerable, weak, dependent child with a price on his head.
Certainly not what the Jews nor the world had expected.
Yet this child was the hope of the world. Immanuel- God with us.
Expectations not met, but hope fulfilled.
This is the message of the Christmas season. Expectations are often unmet. Disappointment results. Yet if we look past our expectations and the expectations that the world foists upon us, we see that there is hope. There is light in the darkness. There is a joy that surpasses human expectations and circumstances.
This Christmas season, wait expectantly, not for the perfect present or experience, but for the Perfect Present.
God with us.