“Have you heard? Jesus is going to be born on earth tonight!”
“Oh my gosh, yes! Hey, do you wanna go and check it out? A bunch of us are going to earth tonight. God’s letting us!”
“How awesome is that? Duh, I wanna go! I wanna see him as a human for myself!”
“Yeah! I’m so excited!”
Meanwhile, on earth…
“Hey, guys, I’m gonna take a quick nap. It’s been pretty quiet tonight.”
“Say, rookie, you slept all day, right? This is our job—to watch the sheep when it’s dark, and the wolves might come. Just because it’s been quiet doesn’t mean that something will come when we least expect it—”
And suddenly, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see – I am bringing you good news of great joy for all people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord!”
Cue the multitude of angels putting on the best light show you can picture only better and singing the best most beautiful music you can hear in your head, only better, even if you’re a music major.
“Glory to God in the highest heaven; and on earth peace among those whom he favors!” they sang.
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, after all of the shepherds and the sheep closed their codfish-like dropped jaws, the shepherds were all like, “Guys! We have to get to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us!” And so they did. And after they had seen Jesus for themselves, they went and told it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere! (In your head, attune your ear to Cottonwood’s Christ Lutheran Church’s Sunday School Christmas Program….when the kids pretty much yell this song at the top of their lungs. ‘Cuz I’m pretty sure that’s what the shepherds were doing, as well.)
Okay, so that’s my own interpretation of that part of the story, my own twist. But it’s WHAT HAPPENED! So awesome! Jesus LEFT HEAVEN so that he could COME TO EARTH. While he was here, he taught and healed and caused an uproar among the Pharisees with his radical-ness. AND THEN, he left the presence of God completely when he took on OUR SIN. Think about it—he took on ALL OUR SINS and PAID THE PRICE, giving us the greatest gift EVER—eternal life; getting to hang out with God!
I don’t know when Christmas became so materialistic and politically correct, because that is NOT what it’s about. And Christmas is more than a break from school, it is more than a story that is reenacted by kids at a Christmas Program—it is REAL. We celebrate Columbus Day and President’s Day and Thanksgiving, but THIS? This affects ALL THE WORLD! It even affects the heavenly relm!
I get so excited when I THINK about it! Ahh! I have no good way to end this post, so I’ll perform a recapitulation.
Angels we have heard on high, sweetly singing o’er the plains! And the mountains in reply, echoing their joyous strains! GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST HEAVEN, AND ON EARTH PEACE AMONG THOSE WHOM HE FAVORS! Come to Bethlehem and see, him whose birth the angels sing! Come adore on bended knee, Christ the Lord the newborn King! GLORIA, IN EXCELSES DEO! GLORIA, IN EXCELSES DEO!