One of the great occupational hazards of ministry is that we can so easily lose the wonder of what we are dealing with. With the demands of the schedule, the expectations of people, the burden of creativity in a season that comes every twelfth month (but is only fully reported in two gospels), the ongoing reality of messy lives (people still get in trouble, marriages still fail, loneliness still bites, folks still sin), and so on, we can easily lose the wonder of Christmas.
In this post I don’t want to prescribe how to keep the wonder of it all, I just want to suggest we do. Whatever it takes. Perhaps time with family. Perhaps some extra guarded time alone with God. Perhaps a special treat carol concert. Perhaps a brief journey to a sentimental place. Perhaps read one of those booklets the church is offering to visitors over Christmas. Whatever it takes.
Let us make sure that we don’t go through Christmas feeling the pressure and the burden of it all, without also renewing the wonder in our hearts. Let us be captured by the grace of God that He would step into this world. Let us be gripped by the hope inherent in the Christmas story for a world of sinners – for Christ came into the world to save sinners! Let us be stirred afresh by the history-changing event of the incarnation. Ponder the first Christmas, ponder the reality of the incarnation, ponder the journey from Bethlehem to Calvary, ponder the everlasting nature of the incarnation. Ponder. Ignite the wonder again. Whatever it takes.