Tammie Grimm ~ Repeat the Sounding Joy

We know that something is amiss with the world. Christmas Eve, oddly enough, confirms it. There is no pretending that life is some scene from Currier and Ives or a television special neatly presented in a two hour cable channel format. Life is not perfect. And we cannot seem to fix it despite best intentions, efforts, and desires. A part of the story of Christmas is that God is not happy with the way things are either. Thankfully, God is not interested in leaving us to our own devices. God has another way, a divine way, that challenges the human heart and mind to wake up to what God is trying to do in our midst.

Ellsworth Kalas ~ Singing all the Wesleyan Way

The first verse of “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing” is an invitation to join the angels who announced Christ’s birth. In fact, Wesley wants all nations to rise and “join the triumph of the skies” in the tumultuous news, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!” Notice the exclamation point. Wesley was inclined that way. It’s hard to end all your sentences with periods when your soul is on the rise.

Thomas Fuerst ~ Jesus’ Family Tree

When I was in 8th grade, my family lived for a bit in some low income apartments. The apartment complex was formed in a square with a decent sized courtyard in the middle. In the courtyard was where all the dramatic action was – this is where kids got in fistfights with each other, where drug deals happened after dark, and where about once a week there would be a screaming match between two random people. Sometimes it would be spouses, sometimes neighbors, sometimes just two drunk people who had nothing better to do.