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  • Katie Heid

Christmas is Coming


It’s impossible to go into a store in the month of December and not have my kids beg for a toy or video game.


As Christmas Day gets closer, the requests become more forceful. Rather than argue with my children, I calmly repeat this phrase:


“Christmas is coming.”


 “But what if you forget?”


“Christmas is coming.”


“But I want it now!”


“Christmas is coming.”


“I have money from doing chores! Please!”


“Christmas is coming.”


Parents know the self-control it takes to squelch a smile and not leak the secret. “Christmas IS coming! I’ve already purchased that for you! You should see the plans I have up my sleeve to give you a special day! I’ve wrapped a few other treats I know you’ll love.”


Then there are the other details I keep from my children, like the budget. They don't know about the timing of our paychecks so we can purchase certain gifts. They fail to see the concealing of said gifts under our coats to get them up the stairs and out of sight. They're ot awake during the elaborate Christmas Eve strategy to move gifts from their seclusion out in to the open.


It will be worth the wait, children. I promise. Christmas is coming.


That same message of hope came as a light in great darkness two thousand years ago. God’s people had waited many years for the promise of a Savior. Scripture details how they cried out in agony and begged God to free them from their oppressors. When the prophets proclaimed, “A King is coming,” it would have been ideal if the follow up sentence contained the words, “And here he is.” The four hundred years of silence where Heavenly prophecies ceased left people clamoring for answers. Even Simeon, a devout man who clung to the promise he would see the Savior before he died only had old age to show for his efforts.


What if you forget? I want it now. I have my own money and talents and plans. Let me make this happen on my own. Those same requests from our children during this time of year reflect the same impatient, hopelessness the world possessed as they waited for a Savior. Then, on a seemingly ordinary day in an ordinary village, an angel of the Lord appeared to an ordinary girl and gave extraordinary news.


 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus.  He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” (Luke 1:30-33)


When the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary, the world collectively drew its breath and heard, “Christmas is coming.” That message of hope is for all people, no matter our gender, race, ethnicity, background, socio-economic status, struggles, or destructive patterns we’ve left in our wake.


The manger which Mary placed the Savior in following His birth foreshadowed a cross and an empty tomb. That means mankind does not have to linger in darkness; we don’t have to pay continual penance for our misdeeds or walk around with our heads hung in shame. Instead, Hope is found in the God who made himself man so he could feel our pain, then endured it for us on the cross. Hope did not die on the cross, but rather burst forth into the world three days later when the empty tomb gave way to a risen Savior.


That is the hope of Christmas, and Christmas is already here.


(Originally published December 2018 on uncomfortablegrace.com).

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