Christmas Greetings Sedona UMC Family & Friends,

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6 NIV)

“What shall I say! And how shall I describe this Birth to you? For this wonder fills me with astonishment. The Ancient of days has become an infant. He Who sits upon the sublime and heavenly Throne, now lies in a manger. And He Who cannot be touched, Who is simple, without complexity, and incorporeal, now lies subject to the hands of men. He Who has broken the bonds of sinners, is now bound by an infant’s bands. But He has decreed that ignominy shall become honor, infamy be clothed with glory, and total humiliation the measure of His Goodness.” (John Chrysostom in A Homily of Christmas)

Advent is a time of preparation—A time in which we wait, watch, and prepare to witness once again the coming of the true light into our world. It is the entrance through the backdoor of God’s presence into the world in the form of tiny innocent infant who would become Jesus the Christ. Not as a royal King living in a Royal Palace, but as a tiny weak and vulnerable babe in a dark and damp feed trough.

It’s a story we have heard over and over, but a story that has given birth to more stories than any other story. It’s a story that is beyond the ability of our language to adequately describe—yet a story so simple a child can tell it.

A cast of characters that defies our understanding—Zechariah, Elizabeth, Joseph, Mary, and an Innkeeper—simpletons who God saw fit to witness firsthand the incarnation. Characters unexplainable to our minds, but characters making the story accessible to our experiences. How does one explain this? It goes beyond rationale into the realm of human experience.

Jesus came to earth not to show us the way up to God, but so that God could come down among us—descending into our real-life challenges—God with us in Jesus Christ. God came down not to prepare us for the next world, but to set us free to live in this world the way Jesus lived.  Come and worship, experience the mystery, and witness the wonder. Come and kneel at the foot of the crib of God—and experience the one who loves this world enough to come down—all the way down—to live with us, love on us, and to save us.

Join us in this Christmas season as we experience the God Who Comes Down. Experience once again the Hope, Love, Joy and Peace that comes through the birth of the precious, adorable, amazing “Light of the World” Jesus Christ. Join in the worship, the Scripture, and prayer as we prepare to celebrate that holy day when God came down in human flesh—a day like no other in the history of God’s creation.

From our family to yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year full of blessings!

Grace & Peace,
Pastor Fred