I drew this on an airplane, flying up to the Northwest last year. I don’t remember what it was that inspired me to pen this picture, but I just happened upon it today as I perused through my pictures and it was ironic how timely remembering such a beautiful memory was for me this Christmas. Advent has been about unpacking the concepts of Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace and how they came to us through Jesus Christ our Saviour.
My life has been jam-packed with four jobs, as a Worship Pastor, voice and piano instructor with 20 students, singer/songwriter, and a care-taker for my in-laws. Because I have rarely had enough margin to rebound, I had lost the excitement of celebrating Christmas; until today.
Today, I sat down to listen to Christmas music as I planned out my Christmas Eve worship set. As I listened, my heart softened in remembrance of how much God’s love was for me and my family. “Angels We Have Heard On High,” “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore You,” “O Holy Night,” “O Come All Ye Faithful.” The lyrics in these songs have been carried from one generation to the next over hundreds of years, reminding us of the true promise of Christmas. It is not about the Christmas parties, or the gifts that we must buy for everyone on our list, or the acts of service we participate in; it’s about how God reached down to His creation by sending His only son, Jesus as a baby, fully God and fully human, to be the redeeming sacrifice for our sin, and to rescue us from the chains of darkness that constantly entangle us, offering eternal life with Him. When we think about it, why would we ever want to be separated from our Father? Wouldn’t we want to be in His loving arms forever?
So, as I looked at this picture, I saw the gifts of the Spirit pouring down to a surrendered heart. I saw an exchange taking place, a broken heart for Joy, Peace, Grace, Hope, Love, Forgiveness, Mercy, and Faith. What an exchange!! Let’s not forget about the real reason for the Christmas season and let all of the frustrations, sadness, uncertainties, sin, busyness be put to the side, so that we can be filled with the love of Jesus.