A Disappointing Christmas?
After all the hype and preparation, all the baking and card-writing, all the gift-giving and present-packing, all the concerts and cantatas, all the cooking and the calories, was it all really worth it? Was Christmas what you thought it should be? Or was it just another “disappointing Christmas?” Did everybody just “get along” the way they should among your family and friends? Did peace prevail even when the clothes did not fit and the receipts were lost? Was there enough quantity of quality time…or quality of quantity time? Or was it just another “disappointing Christmas?”
Somehow, the glow of the candles, the rip of the ribbons and the hum of the hymns do not always give us those happy feelings inside and the pain we try to hide simply seeps to the skin’s surface as our feelings are worn on our sleeves. Sometimes, the traditions we have received just do not seem worth all the aggravation as the reality of economic recession and threats of senseless terror hit home by wave and wind or by crazed gunmen. “Sleep in heavenly peace” is a phrase of a song that we may sing but that we do not get to live. It is so easy for it to be “a disappointing Christmas.”
And yet, the beauty of Christmas is that Christ our Savior’s coming does not depend on everything going as we hoped it would. Actually, He came from heaven because everything was going wrong. He came because we are disappointed, disenfranchised, disfigured, dismembered and disheveled in our doubt and despair, our old sin. And yet, Christ still comes, regardless of our disappointments, to make an appointment with us in His house where we may receive and share His gifts by the power and grace of His Holy Spirit. Christmas is not about getting things right; it is about God who came to make things right for us. Christmas is not about making people happy; it is about God who came in the flesh to bring us joy. Christmas is not about having things our way; it is about God in Christ Jesus being the Way, the Truth and the Life for us so that we are brought into His way that leads to true hope and peace.
Disappointed in these Twelve Days of Christmas? Perhaps you have “dissed your appointment”—Your Heavenly Appointment! Perhaps it is high time that you “fall on your knees and hear the angels’ voices” as God Himself comes to you in His Holy Word. Perhaps it is time for you to carve out more quantity time and quality time at Jesus’ feet, confessing your sin and receiving absolution. Perhaps it is time for you to gather around the Timeless Table of the Lord and ponder the gift that you eat and drink with deeper devotion, praying that our Lord would stir you to a greater appreciation for His death and resurrection for your salvation as you wait for His return. Maybe it is finally time to spend more time meditating on the Word of God who became flesh and dwelt among us as truly wise people continue to seek Him. Maybe your disappointment is God’s way of reshaping your priorities in life and showing you that Christmas is not about your feelings and expectations as much as it is about God’s love for you that is unconditional and mind-blowing, showing you that glorious expectation and anticipation of His return in the near future reorders your present day priorities and wish lists while helping you reimagine your past in a healthy, constructive, Christ-forgiven way.
Let the disappointments of Christmas show you just how liberating and wonderful it is when things are not your way but God’s way…especially since He so unrelentingly loved the world that He graciously sent His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him would not perish but would have everlasting life…and that perfect, joy-filled, peace-centered life is put inside you at every Christ Mass regardless of how you think Christmas is going this year.
Peace, joy and love,
Saturday Liturgy: 7PM
Sunday Liturgies: 8AM & 11AM
Wednesday Liturgy: 7:30PM
Anointing with Oil for Healing: Once a month as indicated in the calendar.
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A Brief History
By the mercy of Almighty God, Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Bronx, New York, was founded in 1928.
Members of St. Mark’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Yonkers who lived in the Wakefield section of the Bronx in...
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Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church
4360 Rev. Theodore Wittrock Crossing
(Boyd and Barnes Avenues)
The Bronx, NY 10466-1804
Phone: 718.324.1288 - Fax: 718.324.2056
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