“Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: ‘ … And a sword will pierce your own soul too.’” Luke 2:34-35
Midst the excitement of that first Christmas with angels appearing and shepherds praising God, we find a prophesy of future pain. “A sword will pierce your own soul.” Yet this had not stopped the angel telling Mary, “You have found favour with God” nor from the angels telling the shepherds, “I bring you good news of great joy.”
It would seem that although God is beyond time and able to see past, present and future events simultaneously, he is also able to focus on a moment in our time and celebrate its significance. It’s something we need to do to too, especially at Christmas. There is much suffering and difficulty not only in our world but in our own community. Yet Christmas is a time to rejoice and celebrate Jesus’ coming into the world.
Rejoicing people are generous people. Their joy enables them to give and bless others. God, in sending Jesus, has given us the “indescribable gift” (2 Corinthians 9:15) which tells us that God, overflowing with joy, has given us a gift beyond description. God didn’t send Jesus because He was under an obligation to send a Saviour. Or that He was under pressure to solve the sin problem. God is Sovereign and free to do as he pleases. In choosing to shower us with such a blessing it shows us that God’s heart is full of love and joy.
In the parable of the prodigal son it is recorded that the father said to his eldest son, “But we had to celebrate and be glad.” Christmas is such a time when we have to celebrate and be glad.