Christmas Musings

Last night my heart was broken for the ugliness of sin. For the frustration of sickening abuse that happens not only in “the world”, but also in the church - a place that is supposed to be a haven of safety for wounded broken people. With all of the testimonies coming out about sexual abuse, #metoo flooding my social media, shootings, I melted into deep sadness and firm determination to be a part of the solution. 

We all have personal sorrow, but can also share in heartache with those who we love and care about. The hurt from the wrong I was feeling last night was not committed to me, yet I distinctly felt anger and frustration about the wrong done. And that’s when it hit me. I’m angry at the individual, yes. But really, I’m angry at Satan. I am sickened by (almost) every news story I read or watch - murders, sexual assault, rape, human trafficking, child abuse, drugs, terrorism, domestic abuse, clergy scandals, shootings, on and on the list goes. This roaring lion prowling about cares nothing about our feelings or our lives. The devil is interested in doing anything and everything he can to get at Jesus. And we are the pawns he uses. He caused Eve and Adam to fall into sin, and in so doing unleashed a string of pain that reaches all humanity. No one is untouched by the disgusting enjoyment Satan has of wreaking havoc on God’s creation. 

Think about it. God created a perfect world, unmarked by the stain of sin. Adam and Eve were completely full of joy. No marital squalls, no pride or self focused ambition. The Creator God was their special companion, and the beautiful pair enjoyed a contented, blissful existence. Until they fell into sin. Eve doubted that God had her best interest in mind, and gave in to the suggestions of the devil that God was keeping something good for her. After “the fall”, humans have been on a course towards ruin ever since. 

I hate sin! I absolutely hate it. It has caused great confusion about the character of God. It has caused separation from my God (Isaiah 59:2). It has caused broken families, broken people. But you know what? I think that there’s someone who actually hates sin more than I do. And that’s my God. Jesus is such a passionate lover of you and I that He left heaven to save me. He laid aside His holy garments and down from His glory, He came to a dark world for people could care less that He suffered and died for their salvation from sin. Jesus is passionate about justice. He cares so much about each trembling victim longing for help. Jesus sees every tear that falls, and knows the pain that each of us experience. 

Christmas is not about a (creepy) old man that visits homes on a sleigh to drop off presents. Celebrated correctly, Christmas reminds us of the first advent of Jesus. It can revive our hope as we remember that Jesus has a plan. He has not left us as orphans, but as He came once to the world to take our place by dying on the cross, He will come again to bring us home with Him.

So this morning as I dreamily woke from sleep, I reviewed the feelings I had from the night before. The song “Burdens are Lifted at Calvary” rang in my heart, and I had a sense of relief. Jesus will take care of this mess. It’s okay to feel angry, to feel frustrated, because it leads me to seek my Savior, the One who can heal my wounded heart. I am celebrating the advent of Christ with a renewed sense of gratefulness and appreciation. I invite you to do the same.