What Now?

Life Notes—December 27, 2012 

“But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.”  John 1:12-13

Christmas is over.  The Christ-child was born (again) and Santa came (again). The presents have been opened, some returned and others destined for re-gifting.  The relatives have (mostly) gone home. The weeks of preparation made for a successful celebration, at least hopefully so.  Only the clean-up is left, along with preparing for New Year’s Eve and Day, then off to begin another year.  Ho hum…

My life path was uncertain when my first child was born.  Of course, Carrie and I had planned for it, at least as much as one can plan for a new life being born into an already existing life.  I knew I would have to give some things up—sacrifice, if you will—in order to be the father I wanted to be and my daughter needed.  Some activities and areas of focus in my previous life simply were not going to be compatible with this new life.  Three years later our second child was born, bringing more changes, more sacrifices. Carrie and I invited these children into our lives and willingly rearranged our lives to accommodate them.  Today, they are both in college and you know what?  Looking back, I cannot think of anything I “sacrificed” to accommodate my children.  In fact, at every stage and at every age I wanted to freeze their development and our lives at that point.  Whatever I might have given up was not worth holding on to, anyway.  I gained more adventure and desirable options for my life choices than I ever dreamed possible.  No, our children are not without their shortcomings.  And yes, there have been times we chose one path where a childless couple may have chosen another.  Certainly, children are expensive, but there has been nothing that feels sacrificial, at least not compared to the daily blessings these lives-with-my-life have wrought.

So, what will we do with this Christ-child born again to us this Christmas?  What will we have to sacrifice to allow this new-life-within to be nurtured and thrive?  Like any relationship dependent on us, we must take the first step, whatever that may be.  Once we begin, additional steps will appear.  And as the relationship grows, parts of our old life will begin to fall away because we have found something more fulfilling, a new and better life that makes the previous one seem old and stale and boring.  Remember, it is to YOU the Christ-child is born!

Life worship downtown is at 10:00 in Brady Hall and traditional worship is at 8:30 and 11:00.  West campus worship is at 9:00 and 11:00.

Come home to church this Sunday.  Let the adventure begin!

Greg Hildenbrand, Life Music Coordinator

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