Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Gospel Text for Sunday, 25 December 2011

John 1:1-14
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.
And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father's only son, full of grace and truth.

1 comment:

  1. The writer of John’s gospel tells us that Jesus’ story begins in the beginning, not when Jesus was born into poverty and was recognized by Shepherds as the new Shepherd King, not when seen by wise men as the new Moses, not even when Jesus was baptized “the Son of God.” Jesus’ story begins long before he became flesh and blood. In the beginning Jesus was “with God and was God…” as the Word. Which makes me think there must be something really important about words and reminds me of my frustration trying to finds Christmas cards last week.

    I was stunned as I searched my way through rack after rack of card boxes, picking up and turning over every box to read the inside greeting. Here’s what I discovered. Inside the cards that were adorned with bright snowmen, winter landscapes, Santa Claus and every kind of Christmas tree generally I read the words, “Merry Christmas” or “Seasons Greetings.” Inside another category of cards – the ones with doves, and glitter and museum images, in box after box I found one of two greetings, either “Peace” or “Happy Holidays.”

    Finally I drove to the third card store. I was at the back of the last rack of Christmas card boxes and had just about given up all hope of finding Christmas cards this year. And there is was, a small box of cards with an image of the nativity of Jesus and these words inside, “Wishing you God’s love and blessings as you celebrate the season. Merry Christmas.” This was the first time in literally hundreds of boxes of Christmas cards in which God was mentioned. So I bought the cards… even though they are really small.

    My unexpected Christmas card research project got me thinking about words. I started thinking about just how socially, politically and religiously important words are. Apparently the writer of John’s gospel understood that too when he wrote, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” The Word is God…. the very word I couldn’t find in all of those Christmas card boxes.

    I pray this Christmas you remember the Word, the child Jesus who was born in flesh and blood just like you and me, the One who has been with us from the beginning. This Jesus is God. This is the Word. I pray you have the courage to say it.