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Daily Devotion – December 29, 2017
12.29.17

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on him.  It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.  Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying,

“Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.”

Luke 2:25-32

Reflection by Matthew Alexander

Christmas Day has now come and gone and the gift of Christ’s light into this dark world has been received.  The promise of hope and peace has been held.  For many of us, that means going back to our regular routines of life; work, paying the bills and running the kids around.  Of course, it shouldn’t be the end with an immediate return to our daily routines.  The gift of Christmas should be only the beginning.  Much like when a child is born the work is not over but just the beginning.  For Howard Thurman, Christmas is just the beginning.

Howard Thurman was an African American author, theologian, civil rights leader and a mentor of Martin Luther King, Jr.  His radical theology of nonviolence influenced a generation of civil rights leaders.   In his poem, “The Work of Christmas,” he urges us not to let Christmas Day be the end of our work but the beginning.

The wait is over now the real work of Christmas begins.

When the song of the angels is stilled,

When the star in the sky is gone,

When the kings and princes are back home,

When the shepherds are back with their flock,

The work of Christmas begins:

To find the lost,

To heal the broken,

To feed the hungry,

To release the prisoner,

To rebuild the nations,

To bring peace among brothers,

To make music in the heart.

 

May we not let Christmas Day be the end of our work of bringing light and peace into the world.  May we strive to continue to seek out each day ways in which we can allow Christ’s promise of love, peace, hope and joy transform us.

 

Prayer:

Show us the light, Lord.  Instill in us peace, Lord.  Grant us rest in love, Lord.  May we find comfort in Your presence among us so that the work of Christmas may continue.  Amen.



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