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What if we had Christmas in February?

posted Jan 26, 2018, 7:07 AM by Bowmansville UMC

I was wondering what this could mean for us in the shortest month of the year – which often feels like it drags on forever.

In the Book of Common Prayer, Christmas is extolled as a festival season and in the United Methodist Book of Worship, Christmas is extolled as a season of Praise and Thanksgiving for the Incarnation of God in Jesus Christ, and that means more than only one day!

But, wait, there is more. The Birth of Christ was celebrated on December 25 but is truly only one of many of the events by which the church recognizes, truly by faith, the presence of God with us.

This festival season begins on December 25 and REALLY ends on Ash Wednesday – which is February 14 in 2018.

While the birth of our Savior opens the season, the Epiphany or “Manifestation” of God in Christ celebrates God’s Appearing and ties us to the Appearing of the Risen Christ AFTER Easter!

From the poverty of his birth, to the adoration of shepherds, to the mysterious gifts of the Magi, the texts of Christmas and Epiphany point us toward the mystery of God being revealed among us.

Through the season of Epiphany (which is truly a continuous journey which begins on Christmas Day), we receive the Baptism of our Lord, the Miracle of the Marriage Feast at Cana, the Call of the Disciples, the Sermon on the Mount, and many more stories of the manifestation of God with us.

Epiphany is a continuation of Christmas which celebrates the humbleness and hiddenness of God with us in our poverty and serves as a proclamation of God’s love coming alive – no longer limited to one nation, but announced for all humankind in every place and time. Praise God!

This is great news as well as “Good News" for you and me!

Christmas is alive and still ongoing. 

For those (few) who still have to take down their Christmas lights, trees, and decorations, this is great news.

For those who experience the length and coldness of winter days in this short month, we can wrap ourselves in the warmth of God’s Spirit revealing light and truth for all. (try keeping up your tree and lights longer!)

God knows we need more light, more truth, and more spirit of Joy in these winter days of February. We need Christmas to stay with us a little bit longer. Keep listening, looking and reaching for God’s presence and continuing manifestation this month. God is seeking us like the Magi sought our Savior.

Pastor Jim