Signs of Christmas abound. “Silent Night” to “Jingle Bell Rock.” Manger scenes to those of Santa at the North Pole with his elves. But the pic above, which I put up earlier last week on its own, takes me to a deeper level on getting into the “Christmas spirit,” a level beyond our typical cultural Christmas. And may I suggest that the spiritual signs dominate the cultural ones.
The pic of stacked rocks prompted a memory of when Jesus talked about rocks talking. As he entered Jerusalem the week before his crucifixion, the crowd exalted him, and the religious leaders chastised him for allowing it. His response? “If they keep quiet, the stones will cry out” (Luke 19:40). Or, to paraphrase that, the world shouts out God’s glory. Not the glory of Santa, but Jesus. And that shout cannot be shushed.
David from the Old Testament agreed, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge” (Psalm 19:1-2).
So what does it mean, that signs of God’s glory and love and majesty abound? This one scares me, and it’s from the apostle Paul, “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened” (Romans 1:20-21). Frankly, I don’t have enough blind faith to think this marvelous universe happened by chance. Nor a human body. Nor an amoeba.
Rocks talk. Arranged like the rock stack, they can proclaim the entry of God, in the person of Jesus, into our world. An entry that eventually would bring, not only peace on earth, but in heaven. An entry that allows us strength and comfort to stand against evil and pain and discouragement and sin. And that done with enough evidence for any honest inquirer to see.
So, a Christmas challenge. In the days remaining before Christmas, and even after, look for evidence of the reality of God and his love. Open your ears, your eyes, your heart. Enjoy the cultural Christmas, but glory in the spiritual one.
Kick Starting the Application
On a level of 1 to 10, where do you rank as a Christmas junkie? Which contributes most to your ranking—the cultural celebration or the entry of God into the world? What can you do this week to focus more on the spiritual significance of Jesus’ birth? Will you? And, how can you be a sign to others demonstrating the reality of Jesus and his love?