“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14 KJV)
Last week I attended a school Christmas carol service. One of the songs sung was the very sad ‘I dreamed a dream’ from Les Miserables –
“I dreamed a dream in times gone by
When hope was high and life worth living
I dreamed, that love would never die
I dreamed that God would be forgiving
Then I was young and unafraid
And dreams were made and used and wasted
There was no ransom to be paid
No song unsung, no wine untasted…
“But there are dreams that cannot be
And there are storms we cannot weather
I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I’m living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream
This is a song of regret, of life wasted, of dreams crushed and love betrayed. It is the song of too many lives on our sad planet, and captures the reality of life itself – outside of Christ. The message of Christmas is that Christ came, and changed the lines of this song.
Jesus showed us that God is indeed forgiving and His love, undying. On Christmas, the One who loves us came to ransom us, and we can sail through every storm unafraid, because He reigns. Though life can be hell for many, because people are quite capable of creating one, it is equally true that peace on earth – yes, on earth – is possible for anyone who chooses to believe, and live, in His good will for us.
So the gift of Christmas is an alternative reality, which is not a virtual or ephemeral reality, but the only true and eternal reality. In this reality life is transformed and dreams are recreated because we ourselves are changed, from the inside out. As we live our lives in the presence of our King, His ‘magic dust’ settles over us, and we are changed from glory to glory. Everything is made new including ourselves.
“And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV).
Father, thank You for Christmas, and the joy that Christ brings into our lives by transforming us. May we go out into the world, and share His light and joy everywhere.