Christmas and worship are inextricably linked in my mind. I love the music of Christmas. I love the traditional carols and songs. I love the contemporary songs of this season of celebration. It’s true that I’m a singer, a songwriter, a musician and have been privileged to serve for many years as a worship leader—in many different settings. But there is something bigger than great music that accounts for the indelible link I see between Christmas and worship.
The accounts of Christ’s birth in scripture are filled with wonder, astonishing events and the Glory of heaven come to earth. There are angelic encounters and unprecedented signs in the heavens. There is an amazing news bulletin from heaven, containing good news of great joy for all people, delivered to shepherds by angelic messenger. While the choice of shepherds as recipients of the first public announcement about Jesus’ birth may have miffed the news media of the day, there were also Magi from the east (who were a big deal in those days) drawn to find this new king who had been born. And the overwhelming response from the people involved in these incidents, was praise, thanksgiving, and worship.
How could it be otherwise? The events we celebrate at Christmas surround this central reality—God forever changed the relationship between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, when Jesus came and was born as a man. John said, “The Word became flesh and lived for awhile among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14 – NIV)
And God did all this, so that we could be born into his family as sons and daughters, a new creation. Christmas celebrates the manifestation of God’s ultimate provision for humankind. Through Jesus’ life, death, resurrection and the coming of the indwelling Holy Spirit, we now can share in the life God lives. We are filled with the enabling grace to become the people God imagined and created us to be.
How can our hearts not be moved to glorious song? How could we not erupt in wild celebration? How could our souls refrain from giving thanks to this indescribable God? How could our spirits not respond in worship to the presence of Emmanuel—this God who is with us?
This Christmas, why don’t we just…LET GO? Why don’t we just revel in the delight our God has for us? Let’s contemplate the depths of the riches of his love—as displayed in the events we celebrate at Christmas. We have been given every reason, so why don’t we just…REJOICE!!?
All of Heaven is.