December 22, Fourth Wednesday in Advent
Scripture: Psalm 96:1-6
Sing a new song to the Lord! Let the whole earth sing to the Lord! Sing to the Lord; praise his name. Each day proclaim the good news that he saves. Publish his glorious deeds among the nations. Tell everyone about the amazing things he does. Great is the Lord! He is most worthy of praise! He is to be feared above all gods. The gods of other nations are mere idols, but the Lord made the heavens! Honor and majesty surround him; strength and beauty fill his sanctuary.
It’s Christmas week, and we are filled with excitement. The tree is filled with presents. The cookies have been baked. The weather reports indicate snow is the horizon. It is beginning to look like Christmas.
We have an excitement in our hearts that Christ is near. The day we rejoice and remember the birth of God’s son is close at hand. So, we are ready to sing a new song to the entire world. It is a song of praise! Christmas is a time of praising God for this lowly birth. We remember the stories, and we rejoice for God sent his promised child to bring forth salvation and redemption. We praise God with our lips, our hearts, and minds this season as we remember this story.
But, we are also reminded of all God has done for us, something the Psalmist focuses us on as well. Christmas reminds of the way God has blessed us and been there with us in the past year. The joy of Christmas reminds of us of new births and expectant pregnancies, of healing, of healing to disputes, of so much more. We each know what God has done for us, and through us, this year, and are reminded of that. We rejoice in God’s power and grace this season!
We are also reminded that Christmas is often a pull of different idols and competitions. As much as we want to sing of God’s glory, worship God’s name, and remember what God has done, we also know there are things competing with God this season. Our busy schedules compete with God and keep us from spending time in God’s presence. Our finances compete with God, and tell us that Christmas is about the gift of a new toy or electronic gadget and not the gift of a child. We each have things that compete with God this season. Find time to direct your heart, mind, and actions upon the Christ child and the purpose of Christmas.
As we approach Christmas, sing a new song for Christ has come! While we praise God for the birth, praise God for what God has done in our lives. Let God to root out any competitors that would take us away from worshiping God this season with all our hearts, minds, and strength.
Lord, We rejoice and sing a new song of your wonderful name! We praise you for you are God! We know that we have not always focused on you this season. Teach us to sing in our hearts. Teach us to praise you with all of our being. In Christ Name, Amen.