Tonight, hopefully, the Christmas narrative from the Gospels of Matthew and Luke will be read, with a spark of light from John. Along with some Isaiah and maybe even Genesis, how light came upon the darkness so the darkness would win for a moment…but never for a lifetime.
Tonight is Christmas Eve. Another “hopefully”. Each of you will at least pause and reflect upon the blessings of a child gifted, the Holy One, who became human so we could see, understand and embody the possibilities of being holy.
Then. Into thinking about that, into prayers for the ill…and with that, I ask for special prayers for a dear friend, Carol Stanley. She and Bill were in a Seattle area congregation when I was Interim Conference Minister and then interim pastor at their church. Recently Carol’s been diagnosed with mouth cancer…and is now being treated with surgery and medication. Prayers for Carol…who is…has been but more important continues to be…a wonderful blessing to Diane and me… She cares, she offers deeds to words…and now those words are somewhat muffled…but hopefully healing and clarity will be part of her future.
So. Tonight…Christmas Eve…reading scripture, hearing great music, singing—no matter if off-key—the powerful Christmas hymns…and then receiving Holy Communion and lighting our individual candle. What can it mean?
In a very surprising way…I have an image to share. To make Christmas a passing fancy. It actually happened last night in Minneapolis. The San Antonio Spurs played the Minnesota Timberwolves. In one moment—probably 16 seconds…something happened that said to me this morning when I saw it: A message about Christmas and the best living. Has to do with passing. Take 16 seconds and watch the video. How the San Antonio team didn’t dribble all by themselves…rather a series of passes that led to a goal. THAT said to me how life can…and for sure, should be. We should be playing on a team…start with our family…then to our business associates…to our neighbors to our colleagues.
Can we be into passing…receiving and giving? Can we be into team? Can we be into assisting each other?
Christmas Eve. Tomorrow is Christmas Day. Then the end of the year. Then a new year. But I ask…never cajole or demand, simply inquire…can we each live with Christmas as a passing fancy…in terms of sending and receiving and assisting one another?