What do you want for Christmas this year? As Mariah Carey might ask, "What is your grown up Christmas list?" An end to COVID and all of its variants? Peace in your family and the world? A restoration of an important relationship? A new job? All of the above? Have you considered what God wants for Christmas? I believe God wants the same gift He offers to us. The gift of presence. God wants you to be present to Him and to simply enjoy His Presence with you.
Will Willimon, the long-time chaplain of Duke University was once asked, "What is the good news of Christmas in a sentence?" He replied, "God refuses to be God without us." Of course God is God without us but in His great love for us, God becomes human in order to rescue us so that we can be with Him forever! In other words, God refuses to be God without us. Christmas reminds us that He is Emmanuel, God with us!
As we continue to navigate COVID and all that comes with it, I am grateful that we are not alone. God is with us. As we walk through the next few days of special occasions and the everyday moments that will make up our Christmas celebrations, my prayer is that we would not simply go through the motions but intentionally seek to be attentive to Jesus' presence with us. May we experience the richness of hope, peace, joy, and love that are found in Him!