Day 3: United With Us
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39 (NIV)
My college roommate grew up in Israel, the daughter of missionaries. For many of Elisa’s childhood Christmas Eves, she sat on the hills overlooking Bethlehem with her family, caroling and worshipping Jesus miles from the place where He entered this world.
It’s hard for me to even fathom what that must have been like for Elisa. I spent many of my Christmas Eves in a popular Chinese restaurant in my hometown of Carroll County, Maryland. The hustle and bustle of hurried waiters and the clamoring of hungry guests couldn’t be farther from the peaceful hills of the Israeli countryside that my friend experienced.
Yet, despite the stark differences in our holiday venues, Elisa and I still shared a similar Christmas Eve experience. Tied together through the body of Christ, both Elisa and I were surrounded by our family in precious moments of celebration. The family who first taught us about the love of Jesus. The family we yearn to spend each and every Christmas with, celebrating that eternal love together. Together with our families, we remember how two thousand years ago in the town of Bethlehem, Jesus entered this world, lived a perfect life, and bridged the gap of sin for us on the cross.
In Romans 8:38-39, Paul lists some powerful things, but none are so powerful to keep us from the love of Christ. Not the heights of space nor the depths of the oceans. Not the six thousand miles that separated where Elisa spent her Christmases and where I spent mine. There are no amount of miles that can keep us from the boundless love of God this Christmas season. It unites us in faith as the family of Christ.
Wherever you celebrate the season, the reason why is with us all.
חג מולד שמח
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