Monday, December 14, 2009

This letter appeared in the Lethbridge Herald this last weekend. Excellent letter. Read and enjoy. Thanks Edison.


Remember the gift that is Christmas

Written by Edison Bardock

Saturday, 12 December 2009

With Christmas, people are so busy trying to find the perfect gift, scrambling to get the cards mailed. The media inundate us with sales offers. In some ways, Christmas is being lost. We are pressed on all sides to accept the plastic interpretation of the real thing and are perplexed to find that after all the gifts are unwrapped, the turkey eaten, after all of the lights go off and the tree comes down, we are not much happier. We wonder why we do not continue to tingle with anticipation and the high level of excitement generated from the overwhelming power of Christmas.

If, like Herod, we fill our lives only with things, if we must fill every moment with action, when will we have time to make the long, slow journey across the desert as did the Magi? Sit and watch the stars as did the shepherds? Brood over the coming of the Child as did Mary? For all of us, there is a desert to travel, a star to discover, a being within ourselves to bring to life.

We hear the true meaning of Christmas is about families, the spirit of giving, about thankfulness. It is all about these, but I would like to remind you, as I often remind myself, that the glue that holds them all together is the realization that we are not alone. Christmas is a day, once a year, to remind us to remember the birth of hope, the birth of Jesus Christ. It is why we give gifts . . . as a reminder of the greatest gift of all.

It is at Christmas that we not only recognize the birth of Jesus Christ, it is a time for us to find, in life, both a meaning and a purpose. I love gifts and the festivities. But there comes a time, shortly after Christmas, when we realize we are in a world not lit by lights and we are able to look at Christmas with the realization of hope that we are here for a reason . . . the feeling that Christmas isn’t a feeling that shoots in like a star and is gone in a flash.

Remember the gift that is Christmas. In this Christmas season, take a moment to rediscover how the holiday started. It will help to have the season and its meaning stay with you all year long.

Edison Bardock


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sunday December 13, 2009

For the Mighty One has done great things for me—holy is his name. His mercy extends to those who fear him, Luke 1:49-50

If ever a verse stood out as a bulwark against the uncertainties of life, this is it. Spoken by Mary as she waited the birth of her child, these words of great faith, were contrary to her experience up to that time.

Found with child before contact with Joseph her intended husband was a huge shame in that culture, far worse that the results of the shenanigans of our favourite golfer. All but her closest friends and family would shun Mary; a story of her impregnation by the Holy Spirit considered a joke or sacrilege. She probably kept that to herself, it would only make matters worse.

Even Joseph didn’t believe this story until it was confirmed to him in a dream. Then he was as supportive as any husband should be. But none of this shook Mary’s faith in the greatness of God, and especially the great things he had done for her.

But the greatness of God on its own is no comfort. Many great people exploit those dependent on them, and create greater misery than they could find on their own. Mary recognized it was God’s mercy allied with his greatness that was the source of ultimate security and comfort.

What she found, we can find. There is nothing in any world, now or hereafter, that can come between God’s care and us—except, of course, our own rejection of him. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

His greatness is awesome, far more than enough to meet all our needs.