Merry Christmas from Jim and Greta

Watching our sanctuary Advent Wreath lit each week with candles signifying love, joy, hope, and peace, has made me realize just how much we all walk around with inward lights of love, joy, hope and peace.

Whether or not you were one of those who got to experiment with matches or candles, or read old words from Isaiah, you wear those Advent lights in your giving, in your smiles, in your hopes that spill over to so many little actions, all of which walk us closer to Christmas.

As we walk the landscape of these days sanctity falls upon us; our hopes and dreams collide with God's and love, joy, hope and peace descend. Hope stays close to all that seems to deny it, if it is to mean hope. The meaning of life was expressed in straw and stable under the gaze of shepherds.

He still comes to us regardless of our night skies or stations in life; he is born into what ever darkness we're fighting, to say "fear not" -- your warfare is over, rise up, and follow me. And of course as we do we find words to forgive, strength to leave behind all that truly is behind. We're enabled to step out of old skins of hostility and fear. It begins to feel a lot like Christmas with something like a new life with others, ourselves, and God.

Today in some ways looks like the yesterdays of Bethlehem. Mary is hopelessly young, ordinary, and unmarried, yet she becomes the expectant mother of a child to be called holy. Things begin to happen because people just like Mary, in their meekness, opened themselves to the wonder and mystery of God; who can do marvelous things in a world like theirs which is a lot like ours.

May we all remain open to God and ready our homes, hearts, and hearth's for the Reign of Love. The Beyond has come to live with us, sharing our life and conquering our death. As you wear Christmas out into the world may you have the merriest adventures taking love, joy, hope and peace into others' lives, as God brings them to us. Greta and I want to celebrate the gift you are, as we partner together in this Holy season of Christmas and throughout the New Year. We are privileged to watch love, joy, hope and peace transform all the ordinary settings and sounds of our lives.

Merry Christmas!

Jim and Greta

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