Sunday, December 18, 2011


Church attendance will peak this week. Christmas brings families together and draws them to church - as Jesus draws near.

…just maybe, we will learn not to seek so much to be different for a season, but seek to be different for a lifetime. (Macrina Wiederkehr)

Now, let’s try a little Latin:

Adeste Fideles
Venite Adoremus Dominum

The grand worship at Christmastime reminds me of body surfing. (A distant memory.) Catch a wave at the right moment or position and you’re swept along in exhilarating fashion. That happens to me in church during corporate worship. It’s not something you can do solo. It requires an ocean of celebrants, choir, musicians and fellow believers. In the liturgy, in the music, in the architecture of the church, I ride a spiritual wave…swept along in exhilarating fashion.

I hope that happens to you this Christmas. May your worship soar. Gloria in excelsis Deo! Let's pray:

We give thanks, Eternal God, for Jesus, with this memorable line from the Christmas carol:

Cast out our sin, and enter in, be born in us today!
(O Little Town of Bethlehem)

That is the Christmas story: Jesus removes the barrier of sin between man and God, and we have fellowship with God. Not a vague sense of God, but a rapport with God.

We give thanks, Dear Father, for Immanuel, for “God with us.” As Jesus said to Phillip:

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.
(John 14:9)

That is the Christmas story: We see the love, the compassion, the mercy, the seeking heart, the purity of God. In Jesus we see what God is like and what God means for us to be. (William Barclay)

Thanks be to God - for Jesus. Amen.

Adeste Fideles: Come, faithful ones (O come all ye faithful)
Venite adoremus Dominum: Come, let us adore the Lord
Gloria in excelsis Deo: Glory to God in the highest