Saturday, December 22, 2007

Soon - The Saviour

We all come with different personal feelings to the Christmas festival. One comes with pure joy as he looks forward to this day of rejoicing, and friendships renewed and of love. That is true of most children. Others look for a moment of peace under the Christmas tree, peace from the pressures of daily work. They want to dream of times and days long past. They want to forget all the unpleasant happenings around them and see the world only in the light of the Christmas tree, they want to hear the old Christmas carols. They long for this blessed forgetfulness. Others again approach Christmas with great apprehension. It will be no festival of joy for them. Personal sorrow is painful especially on this day for those whose loneliness is deepened at Christmas time. Human hearts feel things in the lights of the Christmas tree in so many different ways. And it is surely right that each of us should for a while look around at the outside world. Perhaps, this year, something wonderful will occur, that will help us to celebrate Christmas. Before our eyes stand the crowds of unemployed, the millions of children throughout the world in hunger and distress, the hunger in China, the oppressed in India and in our own unhappy land. All eyes tell us of helplessness and despair. And despite it all, Christmas comes. Whether we wish it or not, whether we are sure or not, we must hear the words once again: Christ the Saviour is here! The world that Christ comes to save is our fallen and lost world. None other.
Wonderfully have you dealt with me,
blends of bitterness and sweet to see.
Let me through the veil of death behold,
My people at their festival bold.
God, into your eternities going,
I see my people march with freedom glowing.
You who punish sin and forgive readily,
God, you know I have loved this people steadily.
That I have borne their shame and sacrifice
and seen their salvation - will suffice.
Hold, support me, I lose my stave,
faithful God, prepare me for the grave.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer - 21 December 1930


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