Rev Simon Scott
Over two thousand years ago a very ordinary Christmas scene was unfolding. A story of the ordinary events and complications of life. A pregnant woman was expecting a child, her partner was anxious, and the backdrop was the necessary civil paperwork. Family life unfolding in expected ordinariness of the season.
Luke chapter 2 tells us of the ordinary drama of life. The shepherds were working, sitting on their camp beds watching the gathering flocks in the field. The night was ordinary, the crackle of the fire familiar.
Yet amongst the ordinary hustle and bustle of life something extraordinary was about to be revealed. The extraordinary Jesus: whose life was to usher into being a long-promised hope to the world, and whose life continued to reveal the long-promised deliverance so desperately needed by a world in ordinary upheaval.
It was the shepherds who first witnessed the extraordinary news of Jesus. While on their beds by the fire suddenly they were surrounded by the Heaven’s armies singing music. The word suddenly seems inadequate to capture the moment, but the response was absolute surprise of an unexpected performance by the servants of God.
This unexpected flash mob treated the shepherds to a recital of heavens songbook and then left them in the stillness with the life changing message – “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people” (Luke 2:10).
The news the angels gave to the shepherds was an extraordinary redeemer who would banish the ordinary upheaval of life to the wings and will reveal his long-promised hope to everyone – including you.
The hope was Jesus, who in the context of ordinary lives revealed the extraordinary love of God to all people. Fast forward thirty years, what would this year’s Christmas mean for you? Where will you be? What will you be doing?
The ordinary Christmas story reminds us that God is extraordinary, and thirty or so years after the shepherds heard the angels flash mob, a different audience heard a different piece of music. The music was the voice of forgiveness from the saviour who bore our sins on his crucified shoulders, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34).
Anyone found illegally dumping at bottle banks in and around Longford town will face the full rigours of the law, it was revealed today.
The ordinary Christmas and Easter message is the extraordinary love of God and the extraordinary reality that you were born for, and he died for.
The extraordinary love of God welcomes you to say, Father, I know what you have done, and there is much I do not know, but Lord from this moment, overwhelm my ordinary life, with your extraordinary love. Amen.
On behalf of the Longford group of Churches, may I Wish you all a very blessed Christmas and new year of 2022 full of the presence of our Saviour Jesus.
Rev. Simon Scott, Minister-in-Charge Longford Group of Parishes
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