First Presbyterian Church of Hokendauqua

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January 2016

Pastor Points: The Work of Christmas Has Just Begun

There are more than three hundred and twenty days until next Christmas! Yes, this is a surprising topic for a February article. Sometimes, in mid-winter, we look back and see how Christmas came upon us with the force of a tidal wave. Then we enjoyed the slowed-down pace of “Snow Days.” In January, when travel got tougher, we recycled cardboard boxes, took a last look at greeting cards, and folded up our pull-out sofas until needed by the next wave of visitors. Now the tree and the decorations are down, and our homes look more or less normal.

All through January, we have reminisced about time spent with family and friends over the holidays. We have smiled as we looked at family photos and brand-new presents, but we’ve felt the pressure to move on to other big projects and leave the holidays behind us. That’s not good. The Spirit of Christmas ought to stick around. At one of our worship services in January, we spoke a new affirmation of faith, in the form of a poem by a great pastor of the twentieth century, Howard Thurman:

“When the song of the angels is stilled, when the star in the sky is gone,

When the kings and princes are home, when the shepherd are back with the flocks,

Then the work of Christmas begins:

To find the lost, to heal those broken in spirit,

To feed the hungry, to release the oppressed,

To rebuild the nations, to bring peace among all peoples,

To make a little music with the heart,

And to radiate the light of Christ, every day, in every way,

and in all that we say. Then the work of Christmas begins.”

May this message empower us as we seek to be the people of Christ in a new year.


Pastor Joyce

Previous Pastor Point - December 2015
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