New Year’s Day Reflections—or The Eighth Day of Christmas

New Year’s Day Reflections—or The Eighth Day of Christmas

I woke up today with an odd assortment of things running through my heart and mind. Thankfully, my vow to abstain from alcohol gives me a wondering spirit instead of a hangover on this New Year’s Day. But I must confess that the numbing effect of alcohol might be preferred to full consciousness when it comes to a fresh tragedy.

Yesterday, one of our Trevecca professors lost a grandson. Marvin’s daughter, son-in-law, and twin boys were sitting still at a stop sign on a city street when a vehicle driven by an 82-year-old woman plowed into them from behind going 90. One of the twin boys, age 6, was killed and the other is in serious condition. The surviving twin has autism.

Both parents are in the hospital with serious injuries. Marvin lost his wife to a long cancer battle a couple of years ago. Yesterday he lost a grandson. We talked about his journey through Advent and Christmas in the church parking lot a couple of weeks ago. He said the music was helping him this year. And now this. I know few finer men than Marvin. I ache in ways that can only pray in groans.

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The Vulnerability of God – Luke 1:26-38

The Vulnerability of God – Luke 1:26-38

We are vulnerable and we know it.

We have seen high tech space shuttles disintegrate, leaving no trace of human remains; skyscrapers collapse; stock markets plummet, rearranging retirement plans; companies bought, sold, and moved with life-wrecking swiftness; viruses spread, kill, and mutate; radicals believe that their god has told them to behead us; babies snuffed out in the womb because their timing was inconvenient; the earth poisoned, polluted, and warmed to its destruction; health disappear at the reading of a blood test; careers end with the slip of a tongue; hurricanes rearrange life for millions; governments fail to deliver financial responsibility; and nations bring the world to the brink of war.

Any serious person who thinks about the way the world is and seems to be headed, has reason to feel vulnerable. We do all kinds of things to cope with our vulnerability. Some of us numb ourselves to it by way of too much TV, sports, novels, eating—you can fill in the blanks. Some of us busy ourselves to avoid serious thought about life. Some of us power up and create safe zones, our protected space. We guard our space and wall ourselves in from unwelcomed intruders and inconvenient people. We live between fearful avoidance and posturing tough. But we’re still vulnerable.

Why We Love Mary

Mary is a picture of vulnerability. Look her up in your pictorial dictionary. How tall is she? How old? Where is she standing? What is she wearing? What color is her hair? How is it fixed?

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