Christmas—A Time for Remembering & Cherishing

Christmas is a time for remembering & cherishing.

Remembering

God is with us always—here & now.

Cherishing

Because of the life, death and resurrection of Christ, we are the embodiment of God’s love.

How do I embody God’s love today?

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—brian plachta

4 Comments

  1. “And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.” The Gospel of John 1:14

    Reminders of the Christmas season have surrounded us for weeks already: green and red colors everywhere; advertisements offering special gift-giving ideas; Christmas concerts and a variety of social festivities. We are bombarded with the commercial aspects of the season. In all of this we re-experience memories of Christmases past, both celebrations and memories we have experienced over the years.

    At a deeper level, for Christian folk this is a season of profound waiting and hope. There is the wonder we experience before the mystery of God choosing to become one with us, joining with all of our vulnerability and woundedness. This mystery reminds us again of the awesome truth that we experience the “skin and bones” of the Divine wherever we reach out to love or freely accept another’s love for us. This season is a time of hope for the more complete realization of the Holy Other’s desire for the “Peaceable Kingdom”.

    But, on the other hand, there are those solitary times when we may notice our waiting and longing for a fuller realization of internal wholeness, love of self, and genuine peace. We remember the gospel story of the angel Gabriel’s Annunciation to Mary, and wonder: What is my answer to the invitation to birth Christ in my space and time? How am I like and unlike Mary, the Mother of God, in her initial fear – followed by an unreserved willingness to birth Christ.

    In these later years of my life, I wonder: What is the angel of God calling me to be? Where do I notice the Christ in my relationships? Where am I still hesitant to freely accept the gifts of embrace and affirmation that are offered me? What is my prayer in relation to loving others and savoring their love for me?

    How does this Season of Advent speak to you? What is your deepest longing today? In what form do you notice the Divine Initiative in relation to your spirit and will? What do you “ponder” as you wait for a fuller birth of Christ in your life? The Season of Advent brings these questions to the fore for me. Together we pray for wisdom and will to say “Yes, let it be with me as You desire.

    Reply
    • Larry, thank you for some very good and challenging questions. I think the question that jumps out at me in reflecting on your comments is: What is Advent inviting me to learn?

      This Advent I hear two invitations to deeper understand these truths:

      1. Because of God’s embrace, I am safe. I am free.
      2. Open my heart to love, the world cannot break it.

      The world seems filled these days with so much fear and discontent, even anger. I notice it in my work and in the news. I also notice that fear within myself. God becoming man and re-incarting God’s self in you and me reminds me that God is with us. God is embracing us and because of God’s loving embrace, I am safe. Fear not! Is what the angel Gabriel told the shepherds and what I hear God inviting me. Fear not! For I am with you always. When I realize God is with me and embraces me, I am free to open my heart and love God, myself and others because I realize the world cannot break my heart just as the world could not overcome Christ’s love for all of creation.

      Thank you for the questions, which invite me to continue to live into the answers.

      Reply
      • Thanks, Brian. I’m still learning to accept the angel’s assurance; “Fear not” in the face of the divine invitation to become more of who I am at my core.

        Reply
        • Larry,

          I hear you…that’s the tough one…not to fear in the midst of God’s invitation to be embraced by God’s love. Perhaps God’s love is the force that overcomes or at least quiets the fear. That’s one I am still working on too and will be for the rest of my life I suspect. Good thoughts!

          Reply

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