Don’t Settle for a “Merry Little Christmas”

“Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth, and no one will even think about the old ones anymore. Be glad; rejoice forever in my creation! And look! I will create Jerusalem as a place of happiness. Her people will be a source of joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem and delight in my people. And the sound of weeping and crying will be heard in it no more. Isa. 65:17–19 (ESV)

Heavenly Father, I love meditating through the Book of Isaiah during Advent. It reminds us that the birth of Jesus wasn’t a “merry little” event. Christmas represents the fulfillment of incredible promises, filled with immeasurable hope and irrepressible delight. Every Christmas is majestic and huge, for several reasons.

With the first coming of Jesus, the kingdom of God came near—the rule of God on earth. As Isaiah proclaims with great joy, you aren’t going to destroy your creation; you’re going to resurrect and restore it through the work of Jesus. This world matters—every place we live, work, and play. The knowledge of your glory will FILL this earth some Day—every square inch of it. Jesus has come to make his blessings flow “far as the curse is found.” Hallelujah!

And, you’ve promised to redeem an enormous family from every race, tribe, tongue, and people group to populate the coming new heaven and new earth. Missions is the heartbeat of your story and the meaning of history. The gospel really is this big and this good. You used stars, sand, and dust to describe to Abraham the mathematics of your mercy and size of your eternal family (Genesis 12-17). Hallelujah! Things are not as they appear in our world.

And on a personal heart-liberating level, because of Jesus’ finished work, we live with the gigantic joy of knowing we’re forgiven all our sins, righteous in Christ, have you as our Father, the Spirit as our guide, citizenship in heaven, and vocation on earth.

The heck with a “merry little Christmas”! Until the Day you send Jesus back to finish making all things new, free us to live and love to your glory, with sacrifice and increasing joy. So very Amen we pray, with peace and hope, in Jesus’ name.
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