The joy comes quickly. The joy goes quickly.
Jesus is in Bethlehem, and then he is gone.
The shepherds who looked at Jesus, are looking again after their sheep.
The wise men are no longer revering the Lord, but ruling their subjects.
Joseph is back in his carpentry shop, receiving customers – not gifts.
Mary no longer hears the voices of angels, instead, the cries of a baby.
The joy gives way to reality.
How do you see the babe? If we participate in a new birth, we naturally experience joy. But with every new birth there is commitment; a cost. There comes a time after the celebration that we must act. We must put into our daily lives the practice of what we believe. If not, we have only a greeting card faith. The Messiah has come.
We dare not stop with the sentiment of Christmas. We need to ask ourselves is Christmas the celebration of a baby? Or is it a call to commitment. A call to a new life?
Personally, I am continuing to relearn that it’s easy to live with the joy of new born babies – especially grandchildren. Yet it’s quite another thing to guide and encourage them in the midst of their trials and tribulations – especially dirty diapers. In all we do, remember the importance of putting the baby back into reality.
Have a Blessed Celebration of Jesus!
PATRICK LAI and his family have worked in SE Asia for over 37 years. His experience in doing business with Jesus has brought him to understand the meaning of work and worship in the marketplace. He started 14 businesses in four countries, six of which are still operating. Patrick and his wife, May, mentor and coach businesspeople working where there are few or no Christians. Check out Patrick’s latest book, Workship, now available in paperback and e-book.