One of my published books is entitled “Blessed by the Boys.” It tells stories of things said by our boys and things they did. What they did and said was sometimes funny. It was sometimes serious. But, there was always appropriate spiritual association and application of truths by which to live.
While growing up at home, the boys usually brought us reasons to be proud. And, they do still. For example, our second, Keithen, recently competed in a one hundred mile foot race in Florida: the Datona 100. He completed the course about two hours under the deadline. He was accompanied by Micaiah, our second son, who provided timely encouragement along the way, and wound up carrying his brother into the motel where they were staying after the race. He was a big help.
In the meantime, oldest brother, Ron, was the slated featured singer at a Christmas event in South Berkely County near Martinsburg, WV. And, Jeshua, said that he parented his four young children over the weekend without incident or accident (which is a significant accomplishment considering how rambunctious his children are).
That leaves Jamin, our youngest. For years I have adorned our house and yard with red Christmas lights. But, this year it was not going to get done. Because of my illness the last six months, I cannot walk the driveway to string out the lights. I have little strength to put the lights up on the house. If I could not get them up, Terry would be very disappointed. She appreciates the Christmas lights so much.
Jamin had a heart that our lights get put up. So, he drove from his home in Martinsburg, WV, to Mason just to make sure that our lights would get put up. It was a long way for him to travel. He said that it was something He really wanted to do for us, although it meant giving up time with his precious baby and pretty wife. For Terry and me, it was a generous gesture of Christmas cheer. We have taken a lot of pleasure in looking at our lights because of him.
By contrast, have you ever considered how far the Lord came for His incarnation? I do not think that He considered it a short trip from Heaven to earth.
Have you ever considered how much He wanted to do it for us? He knew that He would make a spiritual difference for countless generations to come.
Have you ever considered how He hoped it would bring Christmas cheer to all of mankind? Quite the opposite — He did it for our spiritual good cheer. Said the angel to the shepherds, “Fear not, for I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”
Now, for a certain percentage of people these factors are considered with reverence. But, then, there is a group which rues the season. They hate it. They dread it. They have bad memories which make them sad.
But, when we think about how far Christ came, why Christ came, and what Christ gave up to be here, it should bring Christmas cheer to our lives. It does mine.
Oh — I helped Jamin with the lights. I started up my four-wheeler, riding up and down, and “snoopervised!” I did a good job.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.