Christmas tree. Check.
Outside lights up. Check.
House decorated. Nearly.
Shopping done. Not even close.
The past week and a half has been crazy. It’s been one thing after another. Unpack one box only to start the next. Trim the tree, hang the outside lights, re-trim tree because half a string of lights burned out, and move on to the next item on the list.
This time of year is a season of preparation. The days grow shorter and our to-do lists grow longer. What’s ironic is, while this is a season to ‘get ready’, in all actuality we’re preparing for the unexpected.
See, Christmas is a story of God catching the world off guard. A virgin becomes pregnant, the King of Kings is born in a barn, mangy shepherds are the first on scene… you can’t plan for that.
Even God’s preparations for Christmas are unexpected. On Sunday we heard the story of John the Baptist in my congregation. The gospel lesson went something like this:
“Even though Tiberius was emperor and Pilate was ruling the area- Despite the fact that Herod was in charge And Annas and Ciaphas were the religious leaders of the day- The word of God came to ordinary John in the desert.”
Everything about the Christmas story is a little bit (and sometimes a lot of bit) surprising. So, here’s my prayer for this preparation-filled season… In the midst of all of your planning may you be surprised by an unexpected blessing. May you find grace in a new way. May a stranger make your day. May a child brighten your life. May something gone awry remind you that God comes to us despite our best laid plans.
In the Way,