Paying Attention on Christmas Eve1
Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
because he has come to his people and redeemed them.
- Luke 1:68
The Lord didn’t keep his distance. He moved into the neighborhood. And he did it with an end in mind: to redeem his people.
Christmas Eve offers us an opportunity to celebrate the closeness of God. Though our lives and our world may not always testify to his presence, God is with us.
In the hustle of the holiday, don’t miss Jesus.
There are lights to see and presents to open, calls to make and people to visit, songs to sing and services to attend. Maybe you have pictures and memories to revisit this Christmas Eve. Enjoy it … all of it … but don’t miss Jesus.
As the Lord approaches us this day, he does so in his own particular way. Humble. Quiet. Easily overlooked. Our Redeemer has the power to “bring down rulers from their thrones,” but also chooses to give us the freedom to ignore him for now if we wish.
The Lord does his good work in us whether we attend to it or not. He generously works for our redemption before we ask him to help and despite our distractedness. He loves us.
Paying attention to Jesus on Christmas Eve requires some discipline, but it fills us with joy. The experience of redemption isn’t complete for us until we’ve responded to Jesus with gratitude.
Try praying this prayer throughout the day and see what happens:
Jesus, thank you for coming to me and redeeming me.