Later this morning I was having a different conversation with a man who was reflecting on what he regarded as the most unbelievable news story of the year: the successful rescue of all 33 miners trapped in the collapsed Chilean mine. Thirty-three miners trapped in darkness without hope, incapable of saving themselves...until hope from above came searching for them. First, through a small opening, they received messages from above ground that help was coming. Messages that brought hope and let them know that someone knew they were lost (lost = missing and valuable) and that they were loved enough to be sought after. Later, through a bigger hole, they received food, water and other supplies which sustained them until their rescue could occur. And finally, through a bigger way, a rescue capsule arrived which each one of them, individually and one at a time, could step into and be saved from their tomb of death. The Chilean President welcomed the first rescued person with the words "Welcome to life!" Despair turned to hope. Defeat turned to victory. Death turned to life. This was Good News indeed!
Two thousand years ago, a group of men watching over some sheep one night were told, "I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord." This GOOD NEWS is the reason we pause and mark this time of the year with celebration, with presents, with feasting, with joy and with families and friends who we care so deeply for. The GOOD NEWS is that we were trapped in darkness without hope and without the ability to save ourselves. But hope came from above. Hope, that had been promised through previous messages, finally came as God himself showed up in our darkness. He knew we were lost (missing and valuable) and he loved us enough to search after us. He provided the rescue capsule that each one of us, individually and one at a time, can step into and experience new life. Good news indeed!
"Welcome to life!" this Christmas season,