It is finally here! It is finally Christmas. All the waiting and preparing has paid off, Christ is born! Now we can sit back and rest in the peace of Christ….right? Well, maybe not.
The first reading for Christmas Day is from Isaiah and it reminds us that we are still called, now more than ever, to announce the peace of God: "How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation…" We are called to be that messenger this Christmas. We have spent all of Advent getting ready and now the moment is here, salvation has come to earth in the person of Jesus. Now, what are we going to do about it?
Isaiah tells us we should sing and shout for joy. But how do we do that this year, a year that for many at many times has been less than peaceful? Well, Isaiah provides us a clue. "Break forth together into singing, you ruins of Jerusalem" he tells us. The world is not perfect, in many ways we are sitting in our own ruins, of a Christmas or a year that was far from peaceful and perfect, of trouble with family or friends or work. And yet, we are called to proclaim the Good News of Christmas: "…the Lord has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem".
That is the promise of Christmas, that is what we are called to sing and shout. Even in our brokenness, even in our ruins, God loves us so much that he sent Jesus that first Christmas and he loves us so much still that Jesus will come again.
The Gospel for the same Mass is from John 1, and it sums it all up nicely: "All things came into being through him [the Word, Jesus], and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people."
Rebecca Spellacy is the Associate Director of Liturgy for the Office of Formation for Discipleship in the Archdiocese of Toronto.