Raindrops of Revelation

17 12 2015

I’ve been asking God lots of questions lately with Hanukkah, the Christmas season, the strife in the world and all.

While decorating my Christmas tree, I was trying to explain to my sweet and inquiring non-Christian houseguest the history of my Christmas traditions.  The evergreen Christmas tree, symbolizing new life.  Candles in the dark of winter for hope of light to come.  By the time I finished and answered a few “Why?” questions as best I could, I felt I  hadsucceeded in describing a new religion which  borrowed pagan rituals and adapted them to this new experience and belief. We changed old practices, rituals and celebrations, and adapted them to fit this new revelation.   But I was not pleased with my answer.

What light?  What hope?  What new life?

I imagine we all wonder about different elements of the amazing, mysterious Christmas story!  Virgin birth in a stable, angels appearing to shepherds; learned, wealthy sky-watchers following a new star.  Wonder-full facts worthy of awe, wondrous mysteries for pondering.

“Heaven and Nature Sing!” the Christmas carol, “Joy to the World,” declares.  Creation shows the character of its Creator.  It is a concrete ever-present fact and sustainer of our lives, one we can taste and see.  I walk outside and feel the raindrops.  I smell the freshness after the showers.  They eventually make up oceans of water!  Making sense of it all–putting words and coherent thoughts to the contents of an ocean of mystery–is impossible to me.  Yet, we are blessed with raindrops of understanding.  What we can handle, what we can grasp.  We react differently, but we all see and receive the rain.  We all drink water for life.  There are facts we can grasp, oceans of mystery we can ponder and explore.

Jesus, whose amazing birth is celebrated on Christmas, walked this earth.  He lived and taught in Israel.  Josephus, the Jewish historian records this fact, as does the Christian Bible.  The Bible book of John, referring to Jesus says:  “Everything was created through him;
    nothing—not one thing!—
    came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
    and the Life was Light to live by.”  John 1:3-5, The Message.

Are you both, Creator?  Angel-announced?  Mary-borne? Poor and born in a stable?  Human, like me?  Angels, shepherds, Magi.  So many mysteries!  It would take an eternity to discover and grasp them all!   I will focus for this Christmas, with joy and gratitude, wonder and awe, on the raindrops.

 Perhaps you don’t celebrate Christmas as I do, with evergreen trees and candles and gifts, time with family, love and feasting: or as people around the world do, each with their own traditions.  For you I wish that you see the spirit of love and welcome, gratitude and generosity, and the wonder of awe at great mysteries, and that they touch you with hope and peace.

Merry Christmas to you, dear Reader, to All! 

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