We certainly live in a world of contrasts! I was struck recently by a TV news bulletin that highlighted a sizeable increase in homelessness in the UK, yet was book-ended by advertisements promoting all manner of ‘must-have’ things to ensure the ‘perfect’ Christmas.
Some will insist that December 25th is no longer about Christ, yet in a world that is increasingly polarised, uncertain, fearful and full of contradiction, I see the need for ‘good news’ like never before, and there’s no better source than Jesus, the saviour of the world. The prophets of old discovered the truth, so let’s not dilute it. Isaiah proclaimed with vigour and boldness that ‘the people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned’ (Isaiah 9:2). Matthew directly links this passage to Jesus (see Matthew 4:12-17), stating clearly that Jesus came to ‘fulfil what was said through the prophet Isaiah. Jesus comes to fulfil the plan of the Father to bring salvation and restore relationship between God and the likes of you and me.
The analogy of light and darkness is perfect: the presence of Jesus changes how we see things and he is the king of transformation! I pray this Christmas that you will be overwhelmed by who this Jesus is and sense his light in all things.
N.B. This is the last pastor’s blog of 2018