What do you want for Christmas? This time of year it seems I keep asking it of others. My four-year-old grandson has quite a list that includes Ninja Turtle things. Others who are more politically correct might respond, “world peace.” And wouldn’t that truly be wonderful. Some respond that they simply want to survive all the craziness of the season. Others hope for a wonderful time with family and friends.

Then I ask myself, what do I want for Christmas? Maybe all of the above (except for the Ninja Turtles). But what I really want is for Christ to come in a fresh way into my life and into the life of the church and the world. I want to grow in my relationship with Jesus and I want for the same thing for each of you and for everyone. I don’t really need another sweater, but do I need to be able to give myself more fully to Jesus and to others on his behalf.

Ann Weems put it well in her poem in Kneeling in Bethlehem: (p. 34)

What do I want for Christmas?
I want to kneel in Bethlehem,
the air thick with alleluias,
the angels singing
that God is born among us.
In the light of the Star,
I want to see them come,
the wise ones and the humble.
I want to see them come
bearing whatever they treasure
to lay at the feet
of him who gives life.
What do I want for Christmas?
To see in that stable
the whole world kneeling in thanks
for a promise kept:
new life.
For in his nativity
we find ours.

It’s my prayer that each of us will get what we truly need this Christmas: new life in Christ Jesus!

Merry Christmas and God’s blessings,

Pastor Anne

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