December 2018 Pastor’s Notes

December is finally here, and that can mean only one thing; it’s Christmas!!!! And as most of you already know, I fully agree with Johnny Mathis, “it’s the most wonderful time of the year!”
There is so much to love about Christmas. There’s the wonderful food and the fun gatherings of family and friends. There’s picking out the perfect tree and trimming it with lights and memories of Christmases past. There’s Nat King Cole and all the wonderful songs and hymns that take you right back to being a kid again. And who doesn’t like to curl up on the couch with a warm blanket and watch a Christmas classic like Miracle on 34th Street or It’s a Wonderful Life? Not to mention I live in a house blessed with four women, so we manage to squeeze in a few dozen Hallmark Christmas movies, too.
And of course there is my absolute, ultimate favorite part of the Christmas season: presence!
No, I did not misspell that word. Don’t get me wrong, I like opening presents on Christmas morning just as much as the next guy. But the greatest gift of Christmas is without a doubt, the PRESENCE of Jesus Christ our Lord!
That is, after all, what we are celebrating, right? And this Christmas season, I strongly encourage you to take a break from all the wonderful Christmas traditions for just a moment to focus on the fact that Jesus did come. All of the prophecies were fulfilled on that first Christmas morning over 2,000 years ago, when the Creator entered His creation as a baby boy and was laid in a manger because there was no room for his family at the Inn. Beloved, this is our worship theme this Christmas, that Jesus literally became our Emmanuel, God with us!