Christmas Morning

It's just before 7 on Christmas Morning. I've walked the dog and settled on the couch to watch William Vanderbloemen's sermon from last Sunday (the air a week behind, which is fine). Three things have already struck me this morning and made me think (something I don't tend to do a lot of before 8 a.m.)

First, as the Wonder Dog and I walked around the complex this morning, we were both awed by the silence. He even stood still for several minutes, just enjoying the quiet. We walked a bit more, and saw a huge flock of birds coming out of the trees behind the property. He put his paws on my knee (the sign that he wants to be held). I picked him up and we watched the birds flying off together. I was struck by the silence. That made Christmas morning for me. Just made it.

Then, on the couch watching William's sermon from last week, the 4th Sunday of Advent. It's seems that Sunday is always full of sermons about Mary's visit from the angel, telling her that she was carrying God's Son. William discussed the description of Mary's mental/emotional state upon that pronouncement--she was "troubled." The ultimate conclusion was that we, today, should be "troubled" about Christmas. Not the rush we all seem to be in this time of year. Not what we go through in shopping for that one difficult person. Not the stress of preparing that perfect holiday meal. No, we should be troubled by the miracle of the virgin birth and God coming to live among us, fully human, fully God. We should be troubled by what it means to us, what it meant to the world. And, once we are troubled by Christmas, all other "troubles" of our life will disappear.

The last thing I was struck by, is far more mundane than the other two. Just after the Presbyterian service is broadcast, "Changing Your World with Dr. Creflo A. Dollar" comes on. I don't usually watch this, because I don't care for his preaching style. But, this morning, I thought I'd watch it, if only because it's Christmas morning. I got oh, 4 or 5 sentences into it when he said something that I didn't find appealing. He, too, was talking of the visit from the Angel to Mary. It was the way he described it--"The Angel came to tell her that she was pregnant, and the child had been conceived not with the sperm of a human man...." I'm sorry. I don't think that something so wonderful and miraculous as virgin birth should be described so basely. It, I don't know, impedes the miracle, to me. Kinda like when the Discovery Channel airs a show on the science behind the parting of the Red Sea, or the 40 Days Flood. Some things should just be accepted as read. Now, I know that many people need more than just "blind faith," but goodness...talking about sperm and Mary in the same sentence?
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