From the Desk of the Pastor – A story of Faith

There are so many different aspects to the Christmas story. One could focus in on the angel coming to this young girl, Mary and telling her something that would not only rock her world – but the entire world! You could also study this man named Joseph. Betrothed to Mary according to the Jewish traditions which meant she was his wife. What was he going to do when it was obvious that Mary was expecting a child – out of wedlock no less! Then there is Mary’s cousin, Elizabeth, who, like Mary, was anticipating her long awaited, prayed for child. The Bible tells us that even at her older age, she was with child. One could perhaps study the shepherds who were out at night, watching the sheep. Now doesn’t that sound like fun?!

They too had an angel – angelic host encounter of the first kind! Talk about the impossible happening yet at the same time, fulfilling what had been prophesied almost 700 years earlier through the lips of Isaiah. The prophecies alone could be another place to land – to study – to be in awe of – to see how God speaks then at the appointed time, fulfills what He has promised. Those Magi – however many there actually were, followed a star of all things! How in the world did they know to do this? Why would they make such a dangerous, lengthy, costly and intentional journey across some of the roughest terrain on earth? Wouldn’t you liked to have been a fly listening in on that journey! Well maybe not but no doubt they had times of; “Are we sure about this?”

Of course the baby – the Christ child is the centre of all of this story – no matter who or what one might centre in on. After all, when hasn’t a baby stole the show? Even the late Dr. Billy Graham said that he has been preaching to large audiences and a lady will walk by the front with a baby. Suddenly, every eye shifts to this little one as people momentarily disengage from him to the baby. That’s what baby Jesus did – His birth shifted our gaze from man to God Himself. It does not get any better than that!

Finally – there is one thing that cannot escape ones attention. One thing that infiltrates every level of this miraculous incarnate story. That one thing is faith. Every aspect of the birth of Christ, no matter who or what is discussed (except King Herod), it becomes more than obvious – faith is the foundation at every turn. The Christmas story shows us that faith is required in our daily walk with God. A faith not dependent on mankind or what one can or can’t do. These things represent our works which are like filthy rags to God for without an active, moving, growing faith, it is impossible to please God. May this Christmas remind all of us that faith is foundational – pivotal – instrumental and ever present within the many and various aspects of the Christmas story. Now let’s go and live this out as we too live by faith

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