Year C - Christmas Eve or Blessed Body Eve
December 24, 2015
In Luke, one verse is given to the actual birth of Jesus (7). Matthew speaks about before and after the birth, but not the birth itself. John etherealizes the birth with a comment about a Word that became flesh. Neither Mark nor Paul remark on the actual birth.
So why are we gathering this night? Well, we do like to get a jump on things to pretend like we have some control over the situation.
It might be helpful to split this passage into three sections. A decree (ahistorical) went out and Joseph and Mary end up in Bethlehem where Jesus was born somewhere (maybe a manger, maybe not); wrapped up; then laid in a manger for there was no vacancy in an Inn or Guest Room.
The mystery of how (vaginal, Cesarean, soon harvested from a tube), where (on the street, in a cab, at home, hospital, a midwifery), when (according to some due-date calculation, premature [much or a wee bit], or after expectations and false labors) we are born is given significance in family stories which influence how we are projected to be and continues in each of our lives.
This is a mysterious as any revelation (angelic or not). When and where they come is not in our control. We only know there is a choice that comes with a revelation—attend and begin following or don’t.
The story now shifts from Jesus’ birth to his encounters with folks and their opportunity to experience a rebirth of their own work. How do you shift from the routine of your everyday life to sharing your experience with others? As soon as you begin a sharing, the storyline morphs from your experience alone to a new shared experience that shifts your original choice to new choices.
How about this for a renewal project of a congregation. Have folks tell other people’s life story. It changes the teller as they see another in a larger perspective and the hearer as they ponder another’s telling of their life. With these changes come unexpected changes in the community as well.
Blessings on your “historical” data, your revelatory song, your telling/pondering of a revelation that includes you in.