The Holy Gospel: December 25, 2011 (Year B)

Read:  Luke 2:1-20

Meditation:  “As Told To Us”

When I come to familiar times in the Christian year, I pray to find “something new” in my reading of the Gospel lessons.  So, I approached the Gospel lesson for Christmas Day with the same desire.  But…this year…nothing clicked.

I read the lesson—several times, in fact.  And all I got was the Story, as it appears on the page no matter when I turn to it.

Trying a bit harder didn’t evoke any fresh insights.  All I got was the Story.

And then I read that the shepherds returned to their fields, “glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them” (2:20)

It was the phrase “as it had been told them” that God used to ask me these questions, “Why do you feel the need to find something new in the Story?  Isn’t the Story good enough as it is?”

In quiet confession I had to admit that my quest for “something new” was, in many respects, unnecessary.  The Story is the Story.  The Story is not obligated to keep yielding “fresh” insights.  It is the Story.

As this sense of things increased, I went back and read the Story again.  I read the Story “as it had been told” to me all the way back into my early childhood by my parents—and “as it had been told” to me every year since by the church.

The Story has been told to us.  And it is such a wonderful Story that it requires no new angles or twists.  Like the shepherds, we can return glorifying and praising God for all we have heard and seen—as it has been told to us.

About Steve Harper

Dr. Steve Harper is retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 43 books. He is also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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1 Response to The Holy Gospel: December 25, 2011 (Year B)

  1. Judith Warren-Brown says:

    Thanks, Steve.
    And a Happy New Year to you both!!

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