Love that brings us home for Christmas. So often at Christmas time, we hear songs about returning home for the holidays, ” I’ll be home for christmas, you can count on me, …..” How we long for home during Christmas. Do you long to be home at Christmas? What is home to you? Does having a chronic illnes change your abilities to make it home for christmas? Does having a chronic illness make it challenging to imagine even having guests or family ” home” for the holidays?
My wonderful pastor gave a sermon this past week about love, our second quality of Christ as we prepare for his birth during advent. The sermon was titled “Love Worth Shouting About”. “Love worth shouting about is love that brings us home”, he stated in his sermon. We took a look at scripture from Isaiah chapter 40 : 1 – 11. The same scriptures we took a look at last week when we were discussing “hope”. To place the scripture in context, the Israelites were exiled from their homeland to another foreign land. Because of there transgressions, their sinful lives, they were taken captive by another country and king. They were displaced from their homeland, enslaved, and left to live horrible lives. Isaiah, the prophet, begins to speak in these verses about returning home to their homeland. God’s message in verse 1, “speak tenderly, let them know their hard service has been completed, that their sin has been paid for”. It was time for them to return home.
Look carefully at verse 11, “He tends his flock like a shepherd, He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart. These verse describe so tenderly the love our god has for us. In verse 6, Isaiah says, ” Cry Out” When God’s word is translated from “the Message” bible, these words are translated as ” Shout Out”. Love worth shouting about is love that brings us home. Isaiah wanted the Israelites to “Shout Out’ about their return to their homeland. We are to shout out about our return to home. Because of our savior, Christ Jesus, we, that believe, will all return to our homes. Our heavenly eternal home. Because of Christ’s love, Christ came that Christmas night, and then died on the cross for our sins, so then we will oneday return home. Love that brings us home.