God’s Chosen People have know of Jehovah’s greatness, holiness, and were witness to his mighty acts.
God’s Chosen People enjoyed El Shaddai’s abundance when they sought the one true God’s kingdom and lived by his statutes.
These same people knew devastation and humiliation when they turned away from God and worshiped sticks and stones and other graven images.
These same people endured slavery, hardship, and oppression on their way to fulfillment of God’s promises even before they knew what God’s promises were.
But these people did come to know God.
They knew of his greatness and holiness.
They knew of his love.
They knew of his law.
They knew of his wrath and even a greater wrath that could come.
And they knew something of a Savior.
They cried out to God to restore them. You only need to be restored if something has been lost or damaged.
In their cries for help, they attest and affirm what God has done for them.
They acknowledged him through the story he told through their experiences and history.
The vine transplanted from Egypt was God’s people. It grew and took hold of the land and prospered.
And then it is cut down and burned. God’s rebuke of his own people is understood by his people.
These people know their own story and it could be a story that ended in sadness, but the psalmist is a orator of optimism.
He is a poet of promise.
He is not a lyricist of loathing.
For the story is not at an end. The story is of a Savior to come.
The story is of a son of man who will be raised up for God himself.
The story is of a people who will no longer turn away from God.
The story is of a people who are revived and call on the name of the Lord.
The story is one of salvation where the Lord God Almighty makes his face to shine upon us that we might be saved.
This is the story of God and his people.
It is the story of God and his Chosen People.
It is the story of God’s grace and the people who have responded to this unfathomable gift.
This is our story.
The Lord’s face has shined upon us.
We are restored to right standing with him.
We are redeemed.
This is the season where we prepare for the coming of the Lord.
Christmas is that day that we celebrate God with us in the flesh.
This is a time of great celebration for the Lord has not forsaken us but restored us to right relationship with him.
His face has shined upon us.
We can sing in fullness, “Joy to the world the Lord has come! Let earth receive her king!”
For a few hours one day a year our hearts are filled with the joy that can come only from the Lord.
Enjoy those few hours.
Celebrate those few hours.
Remember those few hours.
Then go into the world for the rest of the year responding to the love and joy and redemption that we now celebrating by living and loving and proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ.
On this day we celebrate his birth.
On every other day let us be people who celebrate his life, love, sacrificial and atoning death, resurrection, and the salvation we know through him.
But for now, let us celebrate the birth of the Savior.