Bursting with Great News
By Doug Bing, Washington Conference president
Recently I was chatting with a very young boy at church. He was by the Christmas tree at the church with his parents and grandparents and they were taking pictures in their Sabbath finest. It was a great scene.
The boy is of the age where he will just be starting to remember things and very likely this year will be the one he will retain his first memories of Christmas.
In talking with him you could see that he was pretty happy about the season of the year. We talked about Christmas trees and Christmas lights. He had that special sparkle in his eyes as he told me what his favorite type of Christmas lights were and how big their family’s Christmas tree was. Of course, when you are small everything is much bigger.
It was clear that he was bursting with excitement and was truly enjoying the season. It was good to see Christmas through the newness of his eyes.
When we think of the Christmas story this time of year, we see that same newness. In the gospel of Luke chapter 2 you see people bursting with excitement of the news of Christ birth.
You see the newness and excitement in the shepherds. They were startled out in the night by an angel that was bursting with excitement to share with someone what had just happened. Jesus was born. The angel chorus sang in perfect harmony the news. The shepherds after they had seen Jesus born there in that humble stable went forth and glorified and praised God. A few days later when Jesus was presented in the temple for a blessing, Simon and Anna who had been praying for the Redeemer were bursting with excitement when they saw the Christ child.
That news has reverberated around the world multiple times. The news about Jesus cannot be contained.
It goes forward no matter what. King Herod tried to stop it when he heard the news and tragically persecuted the families of Bethlehem by killing all the babies under two years of age. But tragedy and persecution didn’t stop the great news from going forward. Christ’s birth became a super spreader of good news event.
This good news has continued to grow. When persecution hit the early church and people were being imprisoned and killed for sharing the good news of Jesus, they could not be contained. Acts 8:4 states: “Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word.” The persecution just scattered the early Christians out and they proclaimed the gospel of Jesus in more places.
2020 has been the year where we hear about super spreader events in spreading a virus that has led to illness and death. But it has also been a time with many opportunities to be super spreaders of the wonderful news of Christ, His birth, His life, death and resurrection for the world. Just as the early Christians burst with joy, we can have the same newness of life each day and be bursting with the same excitement to share this great and wonderful news of Jesus. Those super spreaders lead to everlasting life with Jesus.
This Christmas let us all keep falling in love with Jesus and share all that God has done for us, inviting others to believe and follow Jesus.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each of you.