“This is *Christmas*. The season of perpetual hope. And I don’t care if I have to get out on your runway and hitchhike. If it costs me everything I own, if I have to sell my soul to the devil himself, I am going to get home to my son.” (Kate McCallister to the Scranton ticket agent in “Home Alone”)
I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit—that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. (Romans 9:1-5 ESV)
If you can’t hear Paul’s heart of love in this passage, read it until you do. The truth he speaks about has taken hold of him in such a way that he cannot bear to see others believe lies. He had “great sorrow and unceasing anguish” in his heart. This is not just a movement Paul joined or an experience or a short-lived passion. His heart got ill over the lost.
If you are not in anguish over the lost around you this morning, consider God’s great mercy in calling them to Himself. Consider that as one child chooses Him, she passes from a life of separation from Christ into a life of union with Christ.
The knowledge impresses me into silence, but it also motivates. There are many motivators to do the good deeds God has prepared for us (Ephesians 2:10). We can be motivated by anguish and sorrow to share with urgency, but we can also be motivated by joy and gratitude to share with patience. Both motivators come from an understanding of the crazy love we’ve been shown. Crazy love speaks crazy things.
Let’s be willing to speak crazy things as a result of God’s love for us and in us.
I’m not petitioning for the words “Merry Christmas” to be shared at the checkout counter. Nope, I’m talking about getting on our knees to ask for crazy love so that we can open up our hearts to share that crazy love with others.
Imagine saying Kate McCallister’s words about your neighbors, your co-workers, your family, your best friend. Does it feel awkward? Might we ask God to grow that kind of crazy love in us so we can pray as Paul did?
Christmas is a miracle. How are you going to tell the story?