NOUNS AND VERBS, AN ETERNAL REASON FOR THE SEASON
Editor’s Note: This is a guest story by June E. Titus. Here’s a great devotional to end this week’s Diva Christmas 2019 – reason for the season!
Here are some of the phrases we hear as we approach the Christmas season: “So, what do you hope to get under your tree this Christmas?” “I hope the family can get together for Christmas.” “I hope this Christmas is better than last year!” Reminds me of “The Griswold Family Christmas” . . . not the kind of Christmas most of us really want as part of our celebration. We sold live Christmas trees from our farm in the North Carolina mountains. They were shipped all over the eastern part of the United States. To many people, it isn’t Christmas without a tree. To some people Christmas is an industry
Those superficial comments about the Season above and the holiday industry never get to the heart of the reason for the season. The reason is Jesus. Pure and Simple. Indeed it goes deeper than our hopes for favorable gifts, family, or fun.
Our Christmas hope is a noun rather than a verb.
- Hope as a verb: expectation that something will be the way we think it should happen.
- Hope as a noun: expectation based on a promise and a reality—Hope based on what has been “poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
But more. There is a “reason for the hope that is in you.” The reason goes back, yes, not only to the manger when our Savior was born, but also to the cross when He “suffered once for our sins, the righteous for the unrighteous.”
And even more. Jesus not only died, but He “rose again,” and will return for us and we “will always be with the Lord.” Eternal Hope—that is a reason for the season.
But shall we go even deeper? Hope is one part of it. Hope is our “noun.” It is what we grasp hold and cling to. What was Jesus’ reason to give us that hope? His reason is a verb. He loved us and gave Himself for us, a “fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
So then, what is our verb? Is it to wish for some gift or experience to make us feel good at the Christmas season? Is it decorating our place, putting up a tree, cooking a big family meal? There is nothing wrong with these things in proper perspective. When we get a whiff of the pine or balsam, or smell the aroma of that turkey and pecan pie, we might think about the true fragrance of His sacrifice to God. Why? It was His love for us.
We, too, are to be a fragrant reflection of His love—a verb, demonstrating His love in our hearts to others. Eternal love—His for us—ours for Him and others.
Now that is a reason we can celebrate
at the Christmas season and every day.
June Titus is a retired nurse and poet and mother and grandmother, living with her husband in southern Georgia. Now in her eighties, she remains active in her local church. Among other church responsibilities, she teaches a Sunday school class of her peers. She writes a weekly blog on Facebook, entitled “Monday Musings.” Prior to moving to Georgia, she was a regular contributor to “The Watauga Democrat” newspaper, and “all About Women,’ a monthly magazine, both in Boone, North Carolina.