For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all, training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly…” vss. 11-12Titus 2:11-14
This little letter, likely composed sometime in the late first century, provides a picture of the Nativity that we could well take to heart as we put the final touches on our Christmas preparations. It’s been a long Advent, and the ongoing concerns about COVID haven’t been helpful. We’d hoped this whole mess would be over by now–we’re weary of the continuing debates and ever-present threat. And in case we’ve lost focus, Titus reminds us that Christmas, the coming of Jesus, is all about the grace of God and the good news that salvation is for all. It really is a time for celebration and songs of joy–but it’s not an occasion for reckless living. Christmas calls us to change our ways, put aside cultural distractions, and live in a way that glorifies goodness. And that can be done! As we look around it’s stunning to see how many people are living in a decent and upright fashion–it’s a mode of living that transcends political differences. Both red and blue folks are showing love in their interactions, lifting up the poor, and continuing the mission of Jesus. And they live this way, not because we have to, not so we can get to heaven when we die, but because of Christmas, because God has showered grace and salvation upon us all.
Thought for the Day: What does Christmas mean to me?