Sunday, December 16, 2018

Christmas Celebrations

This year for the first time in 5 years I could celebrate Christmas in peace. No sermon preparation and no travelling. Today I listened to a guest preacher, an old friend a few years my senior and when I asked he told me he would be travelling to a village near Mount Kinabalu and preaching for 4 sessions next week. I am glad he was doing it and not me. We watched a short video of the birth of Jesus in church at the start of the service. I am not into this drama or video depiction of the life of Christ but something touched my heart today. The Lord of glory chose to be born into the world in a manger with animals as his companions. There was no room in an inn for his parents.
Nowadays those who can afford it will go to private clinics or specialists for birth of their children. He made his appearance on earth veiled in humility and he grew up as the carpenter’s son. Though he was rich, so says Paul, he became poor for our sakes. I have been visiting a couple of churches and I hope to visit a few more after this. I choose to worship in humble congregations. No one knew I was coming but I was warmly greeted three times from the pulpit and asked to say the opening prayer as a first time visitor and also the benediction. I know the chairman when I was District Superinrendent and his warm words of welcome touched my heart “Pst Tony hamba Tuhan yg begitu setia” as if from the mouth of the Lord. No wonder the news of Christ’s birth was declared by angels to shepherds one of the lowliest professions in Israel. Jesus comes to the lowly and the humble and the proud he knows from far. The gospel is preached to the poor.

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