It’s almost Christmas.

 Winter break for public school students started last Friday.

 It’s almost Christmas.

 The shopping for gifts is winding down, the number of cards in the mail is slowing down and goody-baking is cranking up.

 It’s almost Christmas.

 Most houses have twinkling trees in the window.

 It’s almost Christmas.

 Final plans for travel to be with family are being finalized.

 It’s almost Christmas.

 And the almost that’s on everybody’s lips—whether from an excited 2nd-grader or an overwhelmed single mom or grandparents freshening the linens in the guest room or a military family aching for the missing one or a desperate Santa looking for a Zhu Zhu pet—carries with it a sense of anticipation. 

        We’re all looking forward to something for Christmas – even if we don’t quite know what it is. What name would you give the longings of your heart today?

 It’s almost Christmas.

 We lit the last of the four Advent candles in worship this morning.  All month long we have been reminded that Christmas marks the coming of the Messiah—Jesus, God’s Son and the Chosen One of the Ages.  He comes to bring us God-sized hope and peace and joy and love… and more.

 It’s almost Christmas.

 And on Christmas Eve, we’ll finally light the Christ-candle to represent the One who glows at the center of all our longings.  He alone satisfies our lack and precisely heals our brokenness.  He alone brings fullness of joy and indescribable peace right into the middle of our mess. He alone brings a love stronger than our rebel curses and mercy that outlasts both deaths and Death.  He alone promises a life that extends beyond the mists of right now

 It’s almost Christmas.

 On that night, we’ll whisper with wonder….” He’s here.”

 It’s almost Christmas.


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