From the Pastor, Dennis Plourde|
Pastor's NewsLetter Page for December 2008|
“The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.” Luke 2:20 NIV
We have a friend who doesn't believe anything anyone tells them. I mean, they say they do, but if you come in soaking wet and say, "it is raining out," they will get up and go to the window and look out just to make sure. If you tell them someone is sick, they will call—just to make sure. It is sometimes irritating – it is as if they do not trust us or anyone. They do it no matter who tells them!
I always think of our friend when I read this ending of the Christmas story in Luke. The shepherds return back to their flocks, to watching over the sheep, to daily life, rejoicing because they have found things just as the angel had told them. There in Bethlehem they found Mary, Joseph and the baby - a newborn child wrapped in cloths (rags) and using a manger for a bed. This was not a dream or a hoax. The words of the angels were true. They were just beginning to process what this might mean for them and for the world. It was a beginning that would end very differently than they would or could imagine. It was a wonderful, new beginning.
As we come to Christmas 2008—I wonder what I would do if angels appeared to me? Would I, too, go and see if what they had told me was true? And then, what would I do with the information? Would I be willing to share it with others or would I be afraid of what they might think. Would I be worried they would not believe me – or that they would question the story?
If we go back a few verses (17) Luke tells us “they spread the word concerning what had been told to them about this child.” This was good news and it was news that needed to be shared. It was God breaking through in history as never before. It was angels singing in the night. It was a light shining in the darkness – a light that would from that day forward never be quenched. It was hope that continues to bring strength and promise. It was news that must be shared. God has come.
How do you plan on sharing the Christmas story this year? Or do you plan on sharing it at all? Will the cards you send reflect your faith or snowmen and reindeers? Will the greetings you give be one of hope and expectation orů How do we share the greatest gift ever given? How do we let the world know that this day is more than they could ever imagine when we still haven't really grasped the wonder of it all. God, incarnate. They left praising God – for all that they had heard had been validated by what they had seen. May God open our eyes this year as the eyes of the shepherds were opened over 2000 years ago.
December Scripture and Sermons|
December 7 – Communion
Isaiah 40:1-11; Mark 1:1-8
“Who Is At the Door?”
Isaiah 61:1-4; John 1:6-8, 19-28
“He Is, I AM”
2 Samuel 1:1-11, 16; Luke 1:26-28
“You Will Be”
Choir presentation: Carols and Readings
Diane and I want to wish all of you a very blessed Christmas and holiday season. Thank you for your prayers and support over this past year – it is your love, prayers and support that keep us going—May the grace of God's love at Christmas shine through all of us in the coming year.|