Longing for Christmas

Imagine an elderly Jewish man tucking his grandchildren in bed nearly two thousand years. His son is imprisoned for the allegation that he didn’t pay all of his taxes to the Roman government. He encourages his grandchildren with the promises of God telling them that everything will be okay before he gives them a final hug.

“The promises of God . . .” he whispers out loud, as he slips out of the tent and sits by what’s left of the fire where they cooked their dinner earlier. His profile is silhouetted against the red hues of the remaining sunlight smeared across the western sky over the city of Jerusalem.

He wonders if he even believes in the promises any more. It’s been centuries of darkness. When will light shine again?

He repeats the promises of God with an anxious heart, a doubt-plagued mind, and trembling hands. His faith can seem like its hanging by a thread at times, so fragile and vulnerable. But yet he hangs on, as best as he can, as if life itself depends upon it.

But on this particular night something is different on the horizon. To the south, there is a singular star shining so brightly that it drowns out the light from all the surrounding stars. And it is sitting peculiarly over the little town of Bethlehem. It was a sign that things were about to change forever.