December 1, 2008

Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

“What has come into being in Him was life, and the life was the light of all people.  
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.”    John 1: 4, 5 (NRSV)

Christmas is here, already!  The season that is, and none too soon!

The Light that John spoke of in his Gospel is here, finally! 

Hearts seem brighter, our steps seem lighter, and the perspective toward the day and days ahead seems to be more hopeful.  A sluggish economy may be impacting some of our decisions as we approach this season of gift-giving, but we can sense a change in our spirit.  Or can we?

Maybe you have heard of DJ Gregory?  Born with Cerebral Palsy thirty years ago with underdeveloped lungs and entangled legs, the doctors told his parents he would never walk and instead be confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life.  They didn’t buy that prognosis and five surgeries later—before the first grade—he moved from crawling around with his arms, to a walker, to two crutches, to one, and finally a cane to support his labored, painful walk.  

With a passion for sports, golf became the sport of choice where he could actually compete, even though having to hit the ball with one hand while maintaining his balance with the other and his cane.  By his own admission he’s not very good, shooting an average of between 105 and 115 per round.  

But with an attitude to do that which others said he can’t do, and a passion for whatever life he has, and also for the game of golf—in 2008 he embarked on the remarkable adventure of walking every hole, of every round, of every PGA tournament—just to prove to himself and others that he could do it.  Forty-four tournaments in forty-five weeks; 180 rounds of golf following different tour pros each week; 3,256 holes and more than 900 miles—with blistered toes and feet and falling on many occasions—he gained the respect and admiration of every player on tour, and those of us who feel as though life at times is passing us by.

Yes, Christmas is coming, finally!  

But the Light John spoke of which we are reminded of at this time of year—is always here.  It’s a Light that has steadfastly shined through the all the darkness of the world.  It’s a Light that shines over and through all the nicks and scars, and the tangled mess of our lives, illuminating all the potential that God has placed within our lives.  It’s a Light that shines for you, for DJ Gregory, and even for me—in all the seeming darkness and tangled moments of our days, and the darkness in the world around us.

It’s a Light that we particularly remember at this time of year.  

But it’s a Light that came into the world in form of a Baby—God’s Son—in a manger—in Bethlehem—over 2,000 years ago.  And that Light—Jesus Christ—has been here ever since, shining in the darkness throughout all the centuries.

And it still shines brightly for us today.

Christmas is coming.  The season, that is.  

Christmas has come!

Christmas has come—once and forever—over 2,000 years ago, and not just for the next few weeks of every year like this one—but it has come for every day of our lives.

That should put a spring in our steps, a sparkle in our eyes and a fire in our hearts—not just in the days ahead in this fast-approaching season—but in every day through every year of our whole life long.

In His Name—Scott