As we stand at the cusp of a new year, may we, as Simeon and Anna, rejoice at the birth of the Christ Child, and give thanks to God for all that has been and all that will be.
Christmas grace, peace and joy to you. Christ is born! We give thanks. We rejoice.
When the Christ child was eight days old, his parents, Mary and Joseph, took him to the temple so that he might be circumcised. There in the temple, they were greeted by two people of advanced age – Simeon and Anna.
Simeon sang, “My eyes have seen the salvation of God.” Having awaited this moment, Simeon’s heart overflowed with joy. Anna, 84 years old, also was overjoyed to have witnessed the birth of Christ.
As we celebrate this holy season, we give thanks for all the ways Christ comes to us. Christ stands at this juncture of history, between all that has been and all that will be. Christ comes to us so that in our own lives, there is a separation from what has been and what will be. All that is past is blessed and enlightened. We learn, we repent, we give thanks as we look across the past year, and as we look toward the new year coming, we offer ourselves anew to God.
It has long been the practice of Methodist people to renew covenant with God and one another on New Year’s Eve. As the weekend comes, and we greet the new year, we give thanks for all that binds us to God and to one another. We give thanks for all that has been and all that will be.
God indeed comes to us at Christmas in the Christ Child, and like Anna and Simeon of old, we rejoice having waited for this time. In the fullness of this time, God comes to us; God dwells among us, so that we might dwell fully with God.
May the richest blessings of this holy season be upon you as you live with your household in your community and as you serve Christ in the world.