Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A Christmas of Ordinary Holiness--Wesley E-letter (United Methodist Campus Ministry)

Dear Friends:


Hey there!  I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving!  It was so fabulous just to be with family and eat lots of home-made food.  That is such a rare thing in my house that we have to wait for special holidays to get home cooking. 


Tomorrow night, John Yonts is coming to share with everyone about how to begin financial planning while still in college.  This is probably one of the most helpful things we can talk about, especially with the reality of college expenses so high.  Come with your questions and come hungry.  Remember dinner is at 6:30pm!


Here is info about our Christmas Party!


Next week will have a special Advent worship service followed by our annual Christmas party.  After dinner next Thursday night, Broadway UMC’s praise team will lead us in worship and then we will have a fun gift exchange.  Be sure and bring a $10 unisex gift.  We will find some fun way of exchanging them!


Also next Wednesday we will be out on South Lawn again giving things away!  Look for us!


Now For Sami’s Ramblings About Jesus:


As I think about the Christmas story, I am always filled with awe at the paradox of God’s most wonderful miracle.  Our neon addicted culture would probably say that the miracle is in the angelic choir lighting up the stark night sky in the country-side.  But no, this isn’t the miracle that changed the world.  This event was merely the herald that announced the true miracle to its first observers.  The real miracle of Christmas is so much more humble:  The almighty, most holy God became flesh and dwelt among us, coming to us through ordinary means; Jesus was born.  I don’t know which is more astounding.  That Jesus was born in a manger, or simply that He was born. 


I love it!  Jesus was born!  Jesus, our Savior, was pushed through the birth canal, was nourished from a young woman’s body, and had to be swaddled to stay warm.  Jesus came to this world in the same way as any of us ever do:  through a woman’s womb, and into a make-shift crib.  As a mother of small children I am acutely aware that nothing is more ordinary or humble than trying to get little ones to sleep.  And Jesus was a little one.  In that one moment of unbelievable generosity, the most holy God sanctifies the most ordinary experience of our lives: living.  Our living is so meaning-filled to Him that He dignifies it by living it with us.  How eloquently the scripture captures this ultimate gift:


Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.  Philippians 2:5-7


When we look for miracles, we want them to be other-worldly, extraordinary, inexplicable.  You know—spiritual (and visible) fireworks.  We don’t want our miracles wrapped in the ordinariness of an everyday occurrence.  We want them to glow, with neon.  We want lots of lights, lots and lots of lights.  With so much eye-candy in our over-saturated, consumer driven culture, it seems everyone is trying to top everyone else in being noticeable.  And the result is that everything looks flashy while being empty and hollow underneath.  Within our neon addicted culture the Lord of life is inviting us to a quieter and more solid experience of the miraculous.  


The Lord chooses to work through that which is ordinary, His hand deftly moving through circumstances that we would call banal at best.  No glitz or glamour, just the Hand of mercy redeeming things that we believed to be beyond hope or help.   Somehow one day leads into another day where the Fingerprints of blessedness appear.  And slowly the passage of time reveals to eyes that seek Him evidence of God’s presence gently weaving itself throughout our daily-ness.  Every moment is Holy to Him because He is in it.  ­He is in it. 


In this midst of this Christmas season, I invite and challenge you to train your eyes upon the Holy:  not necessarily the brightest lights, but certainly the truest Light.  Be courageous enough to seek the manger spoken of in the Angel’s songs, and not merely end your seeking when you find the angelic choir.  Search deeper and nearer, looking not for the best glitz, but rather for the most ordinary holiness and the most holy ordinariness.  As much as our Lord seeks us, He also wishes to be found.






Sami Wilson

Campus Minister/Director

WKU Wesley Foundation

United Methodist Campus Ministry



No comments: