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Christmas Connections (Page 3)

Happy advent everyone. This year is the first time I’ve ever tried to juggle two jobs at once, but in reality, they are both about the same thing. They are about re-connecting people- to hope, to faith, to peace, and ultimately to God who is the source of all these things.

Finding connection has been especially hard for people this year. We’ve all been denied the connection of family and friends and social distance rather than connection has been our experience. Maybe for the first time in a long time, we’re remembering how important being connected really is.

The season of Christmas is all about connection. God wanted to re-connect with us, and his solution was not to shout at us from a distance, but to visit the earth in order to reveal himself to us all. Christmas is that time and place where God pulls back the curtain and steps on stage so that we can clearly see and hear him for ourselves.

If it were me, I’d have been tempted to put on a bit of a show to impress everyone, but Jesus arrived as a helpless baby in a cattle stall in a backwater town. That tells you all you need to know about God. Forget those ideas about a remote, angry deity. By living among us he proved how much he wants to be with us.

In theory, making a connection with God ought to be easy and natural, after all he is everywhere, all the time and never out of range, but somehow, we got cut off. It’s a bit like a mobile phone. You need a contract to keep connected, but because we’ve broken that contract, by choosing to live without reference to God, we find that the line is dead.

God’s solution was to send someone to fix the problem, he wrote a new contract (called a new covenant) and paid our overdue bills himself to re-connect us. Wesley’s famous Christmas Carol “Hark the Herald” sums up what God wanted to do. “Peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled”- re-connected.

So, the line is once again open, but at this point you may well hesitate. Perhaps deep down you feel you are not good enough for God to want to hear from you. Well, be encouraged. He loves you deeply and wants to connect with you. Remember the verse that says:

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Notice who it is addressed to – everyone. That ‘Everyone’ definitely includes you. “God and sinners reconciled” – re-connected. No two-meter spacing. No Perspex screens. No face mask to hide his smile. Just you and God, connected again. Happy advent everyone.

– Phil

Remembering the Saints
grace and guilt