Merry CHRISTMAS Beloved!
We did it. We got Jesus born. It wasn't the gifts we bought. It wasn't the last 14 fruitcakes we expedited out of the kitchen.
Or in a way, it was. It wasn't the thing itself, but the little labor of love underneath and behind the thing, that brought Jesus back into the world. Every little labor of love was a contraction that opened the way for HopePeaceJoyLove to find its way in. So thank you, for that thing you did, that you thought no one saw. Thank you for feeding the hungry (even if they were your own family), clothing the naked, gifting those who don't have very much.
Thank you that you forgave when you could have blamed, that you breathed when you could have yelled, that you snuggled when you might have swatted. Thank you that you put so much effort into making things wonderful for people you love (or people you don't even know), not so you could present a picture of a perfect Christmas, but simply because hearts, unfettered, want to give. That's how God made us.
This Sunday is a low-key Sunday for lingering. We're going to make it EASY to get yourself to church (and remind ourselves that after all, we really ARE family) but inviting you to come in your PJs, robe, slippers, yoga pants. We also invite you tobring whatever leftover treats you have, both so that you don't eat that whole pie yourself (see? So many ways we save each other), and so that our Little Bit of Each Klatch, many of whom are away, will have a little help making the feast.
It's an All Ages Sunday. I'll be bringing Pablito and his abuela back, for a Christmas story-sermon, one that reminds us what Jesus was like as he grew up. We have a liturgist-free Sunday! Which means we'll get out of church a little earlier than usual. Greg will be there and we'll sing lots of carols, and we'll have an impromptu photo booth set up with Jeff's Baby Jesus costume, so that you can own that Jesus lives in you, too.
Remember that Christmas is 12 days long--plenty more time for little labors to draw Love more deeply into the world.
If you were away Christmas Eve and would like to know what I preached, you can read it here! And if you're still away: God be with you there. May God bless your every interaction with your human family. And travelling mercies home.
...with no-stress 'everybody’s-included' impromptu Christmas Pageant, candles and glowsticks, and a real LIVE newborn baby Jesus.
The third Sunday of Advent is rolling around this Sunday! Contrary to how secular culture would have us observe it, Advent is actually a pretty moody season (hence all the blue and purple, the hushed tones and harsh scripture readings about the Apocalypse). But then, in the midst of it, arrives the third Sunday in Advent—Gaudete Sunday—Joy Sunday—when we light the pink candle and let our joy flag fly.
Were you raised in church, and kind of miss the rituals and mood-making that happens this time of year? Were you not raised in church, and wonder what all the fuss is about? We invite you to join our progressive, warm and open community for Advent and Christmas festivities this year, as we draw closer to God in this season of hushing by subtracting noise and distraction from our lives.