Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Greeting Makes a Difference

For weeks we have been greeting each other with Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, but all that stops tonight. Now that the Feast of Christmas has arrived, NOW we celebrate. Since November 15th we have been preparing and the greeting, “Merry Christmas” was meant as a future event. HAVE a merry Christmas. Now that the Feast of Christmas has arrived, NOW we look to the present with the traditional Orthodox Christian greeting, “Christ is Born; Glorify Him!” In the same tradition as Pascha, we NOW greet each other with, “Christ is Born,” and we respond with, “Glorify Him!”

Christ IS Born. It isn’t a once in the past moment in history, but a real and current reality. When we celebrate the birth of another family member, we are celebrating an event that happened and now has past. BUT the celebration of Christmas is different, because unlike the birth of another human being, the birth of God has forever changed the world. And the Church celebrates this event in the present as if we are there to witness the event.

The Kontakion of Christmas reads, “Today, the Virgin bears Him who is transcendent, and the earth presents the cave to Him who is beyond reach. Angels, along with shepherds glorify Him. The Magi make their way to Him by a star. For a new child has been born for us, the God before all ages.” TODAY our world has changed, and tomorrow is a NEW day. It is no longer just a birthday, but a day to Live A New Life In Christ. It is a day to, “Glorify Him” Who was born in a cave for our salvation. It is so much more than just a birthday party. It is a new creation worthy of glory!

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