As Christmas Eve approached, a rainy weather forecast had us all a little worried about whether we’d be able to host the outdoor service at The Lawn, but the rain held off and the temperature warmed up too!
As everyone gathered to celebrate Him (safely and socially distanced!), the feeling of the night was just perfect. Several Christmas trees–each lit with beautiful soft white lights–dotted the space and illuminated a nativity scene. Large posters displayed a welcome letter to our community and the lyrics to ‘O Holy Night.’ To make things even better, there was just enough snow still left on the ground to create a fun winter mood. The Lawn would invite us all to worship one last time in 2020!
The band opened with ‘Joy to the World’ and we sang His praises for the rest of the night with ‘O Come All Ye Faithful,’ ‘Noel’ and, of course, ‘O Holy Night’. These songs just never lose their spiritual and emotional power!
Pastor Chris spoke about the humble birth of Jesus and how it was not some grand show or spectacle that all the world could see. It was something much different; a birth in a stable. Then, we fast forward and it is not until about 30 years later that we hear much more about Jesus’ life, teachings, and miracles. That was quite an unexpected story and timeline for the Savior of the world!
That may not be what we would expect for Jesus, but it’s not often that God’s timeline matches our own expectations. This was especially true for many of us in 2020. It was a year with many unexpected occurrences and delayed plans, but that is OK!
It’s important to remember that even in this age of instant things, we can and should rest in God’s timeline. It’s important that we challenge our traditional thinking and let go of expectations that are rooted in our own desires and wants. What if we changed our expectations so that they are focused on where we will be in 30 years instead of where we will be tomorrow?
We were encouraged to learn from Jesus’ story, and refocus ourselves so that we are looking at where we are going instead of thinking about where we are now. We should be focused not on just the circumstances of today, but on a life that includes a relationship with Him!
It was a powerful Christmas Eve discussion that each of us should think about in the days, weeks, and years ahead. You can still catch the online message here if you were unable to make it.
We hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and has a happy New Year! See you in 2021!