1 December, 2011, 1:26 pm
In the hymn book ‘More Voices’ there is a hymn called, ‘Welcome, Jesus, You Are Welcome’. The first verse is very appropriate for Advent and Christmas; “Welcome, Jesus, you are welcome in this world made hard by fear; loving reach us, living teach us, Jesus, you are welcome here.”
With the advent of the Christmas Season we find ourselves busy with plans, parties and presents. We also increasingly find ourselves reacting to how the wider culture waters down Christmas. To be honest, I am troubled by the Town of Oakville renaming its’ Christmas tree an “illuminated tree” or other attempts such as having a Wish Tree. However; the words of the hymn remind me that our busyness during this season or the culture’s disregard for the meaning of Christmas is not the issue. The important issue is what we do about Jesus. Do we make Jesus welcome?
The message of the hymn is the good news of Jesus coming into our world to address fear. Beyond that the hymn calls us to respond to this good news by opening ourselves to Jesus’ love and teaching. The implication of this is that in receiving Jesus’ love we incorporate into our lives his teaching and live more fully his love.
The Christmas Season is a time for us to welcome Jesus and to share more intentionally his love with others. When it comes down to it our busyness and how others celebrate during the season are not the issue. What matters is how it transforms our lives and what we in turn do with this Jesus in our midst.
Enjoy the season and relax about what society does or does not do with Christmas. Welcome the presence of Jesus and his love and in so doing the season will be a blessing to you and those around you.
May God bless you and all whom you hold dear in this special and sacred season.