‘He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.’ (Colossians 1 and 17)
Well, what a year 2021 has been! In these past months, our world has continued to face up to the challenge and the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic, dealing with illness and death as well as recovery strategies and vaccination programmes.
In contrast, there has been the welcome relief of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, which provided positive engagement, something to enjoy and the opportunity to celebrate our countries’ achievements. Of course, we’ve also been witness to both natural and manmade disasters and tragedies – wildfires in different countries, hurricanes and storms, each of them presenting significant challenges. We’ll all recall Afghanistan as it continues its journey and the emerging trends and cause for concern. And who hasn’t been captivated by COP26 and our interest in our planet?
In such tumultuous times, where or who do we turn to? Hebrews 13 and 8 tells us that we turn to Jesus, who is the same ‘yesterday, today and for ever’. Colossians 1 and 17 describes him as ‘the one in whom all things hold together’, and Revelations 22 and 13 says he is ‘the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End’.
We need to turn then to the one who is wiser than we are, more compassionate than we are, more powerful than we are, who is both transcendent yet with us and who is present in the midst of the tumult and the chaos and its resultant personal cost. We do this because we read in Psalm 23 and in Matthew 11:28, that he invites us to rest in him. And if ever there was a time to turn to Jesus, then it would be at this Christmas time when we pause to remember and celebrate his birth, his incarnation, his becoming Emmanuel – God with us.
What does all this mean? It means there is hope. It means we are not on our own. It means we have someone who can restore our souls when we are weary. Someone who can give us rest when we’re tired. Someone who can provide an eternal perspective when the immediate is all-consuming. Someone who holds us and our world together when we and it are falling apart. That truly is something worth celebrating this Christmas time.
Why would we not want to get to know someone like Jesus?
If your relationship with Jesus has been neglected for a while, Christmas represents an opportunity for it to be reconnected, reignited. And if you don’t know him already, Christmas time is also an opportunity to meet Jesus for the first time, to invite him into your heart and to discover that he can be your saviour and your friend.
Commissioner Rosalie joins me in wishing you a very happy Christmas and that God’s blessing would be yours during this holy season.