15th of December
If you enter a supermarket now during the pre-Christmas time, you can listen to the old hit-tune: “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas.” People start dreaming about white snow, a sledge and Santa Claus. The music is played in order to get people in the right mood for Christmas. It works since so many people think of Santa Claus and snow when they think of Christmas. Many people become real romantic when they hear this song and visualize the beautiful snow and the Santa Claus with a big beard. It is not sinful to become sentimental, but neither snow nor Santa Claus has anything to do with Christmas.
I can assure you that that it wasn’t very sentimental to be born in a stable for approximately 2011 years ago. I write approximately 2011 years since the date of Jesus’ birth is very much discussed. Mary was a young girl who became pregnant and her parents had promised Joseph that she should become his bride. Their parents had thought that they would suit each other. Mary and Joseph had no sexual relationship and you can imagine the fuss that was made when they discovered that she was pregnant. Who was the man? Poor Joseph. What should he do now? Her parents were probably both angry and desperate. Mary had been visited by an angel who told her that she should be pregnant by the help of the Holy Spirit. She should become the mother of the Savior of the world. She had accepted that, but the others around her did not understand that. God knew that this could be difficult to accept and he sent an angel to Joseph as well. Joseph had been willing to release Mary for her promise to become his bride. The angel came to Joseph in a dream and said: Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary, your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matt.1:20+21) This message was necessary for Joseph in order for him to take care of Mary. It is fantastic that both Mary and Joseph were willing to carry through with this great commission in spite of all the troubles and rumors.
Mary was soon to give birth, but a decree had gone out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. They should do so in the city they came from and Joseph was of the house of David and he took Mary with him to Bethlehem. They could not find any place to stay anywhere and they finally had to enter a stable. The baby was due and she gave birth to Jesus. Joseph might have helped her. There were no doctors or helpers with sterile instruments and a lot of knowledge. I am sure that the Holy Spirit was there since it was Jesus Himself who entered this world. He was really born in a very simple place. I presume that they had animals there. They were probably curious and were sniffing and smelling and they wanted to share the attention of the new-born baby. We do not hear so much about Joseph in the Bible, but he really took care of his wife and the new-born baby.
I really do not believe that there was any snow when Jesus was born. He was born with shepherds watching their flock outside on the field. God again sent an angel, but this time to the shepherds. The glory of the Lord shone around them and they got afraid, but an angel of the Lord said: “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. “ The angel continued to talk about the baby that was wrapped in a manger and all of a sudden they were surrounded by a multitude of the heavenly host praising God saying:“Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward men!” The shepherds found the baby and they told Mary and Joseph all about the visit of the angels and what they had said. The Bible says that the shepherds praised God for all what they had heard and seen. They were actually the first ones to see Jesus after Mary and Joseph. They were probably filled with both reverence and pride. I believe that God likes shepherds since shepherds are talked about quite often in the Bible. King David was a shepherd. The Lord Himself is called a shepherd. We can think of ps.23 that says: “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. “
If we want to be full of bliss for Christmas, we can think of the Shepherd surrounded by a host of angels praising God and stars blinking in the clear chilly night. These simple people experienced a presence of God that few others had experienced both before and after. I really would have liked to be a shepherd at that time. I like animals, but my calling is to be a female shepherd for God’s children.
Why did I use an old hit-tune as a title for my writing this time? First of all I felt that the Spirit said so and secondly I thought of the symbolism of snow. We can go to the psalm 51:7 It says: “ Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.” It is David who cries this out before the Lord. In Matt.28 there is a description of an angel at the empty tomb. The Bible says that he had a countenance like lightning and clothes whiter than snow. We can read about snow several places in the Bible and it is always a symbol of something pure and beautiful. It is difficult to describe snow for those of you who haven’t seen it. Snow comes from heaven as rain. It comes down as small dots or in flakes. I can hardly think of anything whiter, but that is before it is polluted. Snow can be like a wonderful cover over the landscape and everything becomes light. One can form figures and build caves with snow. One can also slide and go skiing on the snow. In every country where winter is common, snow is a natural part of the winter. If we get too much of snow, it can become a problem for the traffic and it might be too heavy for cars and roofs, but this is not the theme now, but the symbolism.
Why did Jesus come to this world? He came to take away our sin. By so doing, he opened a way to the Father. The road had been closed from the time of Eva and Adams’ sinning. Jesus is the way to the Father. We are sinners no matter how kind we are. Jesus was a faultless lamb that was slain for our sake. He cleanses us and makes us white as snow. When the Father sees people coming with white clothes, the gate is opened and there are no hindrances. It is what we call justification. It really isn’t right that Jesus should pay for something He did not do, but He was willing to do so. He said: “I pay your debts in order for you to be clean as snow.” When we shine, it is not because we are so fantastic, but because we have received white clothes of righteousness. Many are buying new clothes for Christmas, but I would rather see people receiving the clothes that Jesus holds in His hands. He says: “Come to Me and get washed by My blood and you will receive clean and beautiful Christmas clothes for Christmas. We are actually celebrating His birthday and He wishes to give away shining clothes for His birthday. We can help Him by telling our families and friends, known and unknown about the white clothes that are waiting them if they receive Jesus as their Savior. We have so many opportunities to do so during Christmas. I am writing so many cards and letters and share what I have seen and what I have heard.
In Norway we have a song going like this: The fields are white and the harvest great, but so few are fighting for Jesus here on earth. Most people fear the sacrifice of the calling. In the meantime, people die, die without any light to see.
LET IT RAIN WHITE SNOW OF RIGHTOUSNESS OVER THE EARTH THIS CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!