Advent 50: The Christ in Christmas
Have you woken up on December 26th wondering, where did Christmas go? The Christmas carols have stopped playing and the stores are in “Return” mode.
Every year we know that Christmas must be more than the hustle and bustle that drives us to drive the economy. We all know that there is a Christ in Christmas. And if we’re lucky, we have a chance to read a story, watch a movie, or contemplate a carol that takes us away in a manager, where there’s no crib for baby Jesus’ head. But at the end of it all, have we found that Christ in Christmas?
The Advent Season is a time of preparation for Christmas. On Christmas day, we in the Armenian Church proclaim, Christos dzunav yev haytnetsav = “Christ is born and revealed.” Often those words are said mechanically, without a thought about the full impact those words should have on our lives. What does it mean that Christ is born? Or revealed? If the Creator of the Universe, if the One who gave you breath is in our midst, would we give him a courteous node, or would our shock and awe overwhelm us to the point of trembling? For two thousand years people have been questioning the meaning of Christ and answering in ways that have given them spiritual satisfaction or unworldly torment.
The Advent Season in the Armenian Church is 50 days. It culminates on Christmas, January 6. We call this day Theophany which means the Revelation of God. Today I invite you to join me on the journey of advent through the next 50 days. We will be going through the essential teachings of Jesus which He Himself expressed in the Sermon on the Mount. I give you this guarantee, follow the 50-day plan, and Christmas will have new meaning for you this year. You’ll discover the Christ that’s in Christmas. The saying, “Christ is born and revealed” will not be a postcard imprint but something that impacts your life on Christmas and on the 364 days after.
I look forward to having you with us for this journey. For today, accept the challenge of making this Christmas season the one in which you move from Christmas the holiday to Christmas, the Christ within us.
We begin today with a simple prayer, Lord our God, Jesus Christ, you are the center of my life. You have defined time for humanity, as we calculate our dates before Your Revelation and in the Year of our Lord. Yet with all the wonders that we know belong to you, we focus on the worldly glitter and miss the fire with which you light our hearts. May this Advent Season be one of growth for me and my family. May we be challenged to find you in the true Christmas celebration which adorns our lives. Amen.