Day 4/December 28 Devotion
Reflection by Deacon Kenny Champagne,
Lord of Life Lutheran Church,
Fairfax & Clifton, VA
If Jesus was born in the 21st century, today, three days after his birth, would possibly be Mary and Joseph’s first full day at home with their first newborn baby. Full disclosure, I am not a parent, but I can only imagine the worry, anxiety, and fear of parents that first day at home out of the hospital. There are no nurses checking in. There is not immediate medical attention if something goes wrong. There is probably a silence that is a little uneasy (besides the crying, of course)! While Mary and Joseph wouldn’t have had this experience, the fear of the unknown, the questions of what is to come, would certainly be lingering in their minds.
As we turn toward a new year with 2020 behind us, there is good reason to be anxious, worried, and fearful. We are exhausted from living through history. The pandemic continues to rage on. Vaccines are in the works but how will they actually work? There is a transition of power in our politics ahead. As much as we want to believe that we will wake up on January 1, 2021 and all of this will have been a dream (or nightmare), we know that not to be true. So, what is to come? It can be a scary thought. The beauty of Christmas, of this baby who is now only three days old, is that we do not need to fear. In the Christ child comes hope with the proclamation from Isaiah 35, “Here is your God.” This baby whom Mary and Joseph surly feared for, despite the multiple angels saying, “Do not fear,” is the living, breathing, incarnation of hope, love, grace, and the God who has come and saved you!
Say to those who are of a fearful heart, “Be strong, do not fear! Here is your God. God will come with vengeance, with terrible recompense. God will come and save you.”
Questions to Ponder
- What are the things you are fearful of in the future?
- What peace have you found this year?
- How do you live out your hopefulness over your fearfulness?
Silence for Reflection
God of peace rest our hearts and minds this day. Provide us places to put our fear and anxieties about the future so that it may not become a roadblock for a life of hope and peace. We thank you for the peace brought to us through Christ Jesus and pray that we may experience this peace with hearts opened to the world. May we be signs of hopefulness in our communities proclaiming boldly Your gift of peace to all of creation. Amen