Barber shops are like libraries-full of information if you take the time to find it. Last week, I was having my grey hair washed by this girl behind me I had never seen before. To me, she was only water, a voice and hands massaging my wet, soapy head.
Trying to make conversation, she was babbling about nothing, so I said to her,
“Tell me what Christmas means to you?”
Evidently that surprised her a bit, so she said, “Good question, no one’s ever asked me that.”
She then began this soliloquy about family, gifts, and time off from work. I then asked her the Advent question-
“Does Jesus have anything to do with your family Christmas?”
That question seemed to stump her completely!
Again she replied, “Good question, no one has ever asked me that before.” The conversation had stopped dead in its tracks at the mention of Jesus in connection with HIS birthday!
This anonymous young girl washing my hair became symbolic of America in general. She could celebrate her Christmas and never have a single thought of Jesus and His advent into our history and lives.
I like that word…Advent. It is a religious expression of a marvelous truth believed by millions. It tells us why Christ-followers even care about the birthday of this remarkable man Jesus of Nazareth. You see “advent” means Jesus was born into this world, not born from it. He came into history from outside history, he did not evolve out of history. His birth was history’s Miracle. Virgin born, Holy Spirit conceived, baby Jesus was Emmanuel-God with us. Our Lord’s birth was an ADVENT. He did not come from the human race, but came from outside it to dwell in it that he might redeem it. He was God incarnate, not a human being becoming God; but rather God becoming human that we might see both who God is and what mankind was meant to be!! His life was to be the Highest and Holiest entering in the lowest door-a cow barn and a feeding trough. Our Lord entered our history through the Virgin Mary.
Advent and You
Let me return to my conversation with miss anonymous, (I do know her name.) When it became obvious she was oblivious to this Advent season, I asked her,
“Can I tell you what Christmas means to me?” Not sure where this was going, she said with hesitation in her voice “Sure.”
I then told her about Advent, “Christmas to me, means God loves us so much, He was willing to become a man, be born in a feeding trough to totally identify with the least of us. He then lived a sinless life that he sacrificed on the Cross to forgive my sins and give me eternal life. As a 16-year old boy, I asked him to use my heart as His Bethlehem and be born in me.” He did it and now I am a forgiven, saved child of God with Jesus’ Spirit living in me.”
It was very quiet behind me and her active hands stopped the wet massage. “Really, she said, I had no idea.”
I was not able to go further with the dialogue, but God will use the encounter as seed in her heart, I am sure His word will not return void. Like Samson of old, my hair is still growing and I shall return!
Have a Merry Christ-filled Christmas- Make room for him in YOU!