PARTY with JOY; Our Savior’s Here!

Psalm 96: 1-6
Isaiah 9: 2-7
LUKE 2: 1-16


I am the way … I am the light … I’ll never leave and all I ask of you … BELIEVE!” On this Christmas Eve of the year 2021 … are you amongst those who believe that Christmas is truly about the Son of God not about a baby, not a collection of candy canes and cookies not even about the carefully wrapped gifts under your trees but can you state affirmatively that you BELIEVE Christmas is about God’s incredible demonstration of love in Jesus Christ?

Those first words of mine tonight sounded like Scripture and part of it is … however this message was written into a song by Paul O’Neill from Trans Siberian Orchestra and it is sung with joy around the globe every year … WITH JOY … in ROCK CONCERTS … a CHRISTIAN message of faith with the simple solution you and I need for our lives … BELIEVE!!! More than 17 MILLION individuals have heard my friend’s words sung in concerts from Australia to Munich to Philadelphia … a global party every year sharing the message of Jesus Christ with absolute joy.

And, there is no doubt folks take lots of SELFIES at TSO concerts because I have already seen a whole lot of them from friends across the country this year. Are you taking a SELFIE here tonight? Letting the world know … do what Jesus declared not in a baby’s cry but as the Son of God … “GO FORTH and Tell the entire world the story and make disciples!! With our social media we can show our personal worlds what matters right here and now … I am guessing that worshiping with us this year are individuals in Asia, Africa, Europe and across North America … can you sense the star of Jesus shining just as brightly today as it was on that cold winter’s night when the angels came down to the shepherds in the field? <HERE, Let me get a selfie with those online>

So, friends … DO YOU BELIEVE that Jesus Christ is more than a baby’s image we look at on Christmas Eve? Are you ready to PAR-TY because of your faith in Jesus? Because of your love for Jesus and God? Are you ready to share your joy with your personal world of friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers? My friends in TSO share their joy and faith. HARK THE HERALD ANGELS SING – GLORY TO THE KING friends … GLORY because Jesus is more than a baby … He is more than a holiday greeting’s theme date and it is about time we celebrate just who He is! And, showcase to the world that we have joy and that the world should have JOY TO THE WORLD THE LORD has come… has indeed come more than 2000 years ago.

The angels sing … the angels called out to the shepherds … GET UP … Get EXCITED … Check out the star … check out the clear light stream for living the right way!! God’s gift that was unwrapped in a lowly barn setting but that was only the beginning because Jesus is for EVERY ONE … EVERY ONE EVERY ONE … EVERY HUMAN BEING GOD loves with equality unlike many of us who choose to pick some and reject others.

Are you taking your selfies??? Showing the world … your world ….that Jesus Christ matters …. <<How many of you have taken at least one SELFIE tonight?>> Showing that being in church is a cool, fun and yes JOY-FILLED investment of your time …. “I bring you and you and you and all of you on FACEBOOK … just what the angel brought when he told those shepherds “I bring you good tidings of GREAT JOY Joy to the world the Lord has come <<Didn’t I sing that already?>> which shall be to all people … please note the angel was careful to state ALL because Jesus belongs to ALL people EVERYONE and the lesson of Jesus is not that he was born as a baby but it was that Jesus lived a life doing His best to share God’s command that we are to love God and to love ALL of our neighbors!! That’s what we should be shouting every Christmas season …. HEY NEIGHBOR I LOVE YOU!!! Hey STRANGER, I LOVE YOU! And, doing it with absolute joy that reflects our faith in Jesus Christ.

The Christmas message … the Christmas gift did you hear Donna read the words that Linus read in A Charlie Brown’s Christmas and that Luke wrote down for history 2000 plus years ago …. “For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord!” We can call Him Jesus for short ok … we can bow down and call Him Lord and Master or we can rejoice any time we choose because He is ours and we are His ….. call Him Savior who came to change the world and to offer humanity a choice God or Evil … I know I pick the choice that lets me “rejoice in The Lord always; Again I say rejoice!” Are you making the same choice? That Jesus guy?

And, suddenly friends, those shepherds saw something absolutely spectacular …. “There was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying GLORY TO GOD in the highest and on earth PEACE and GOOD WILL Toward men!!” I guess the angels got the message that God’s greatest expectation for us is … that we love God and love all of our neighbors … GLORY …. REJOICE!!!

You know, there is no way I could have predicted the mess of divisiveness and global pandemic we are in today at the Christmas Eve services I preached at ten years ago. No way …. But does that mean we should reject Jesus and accept the world’s directions listening to voices that celebrate dividing us up like a pie at our Christmas table? ABSOLUTELY NOT … because the gift of Christmas is FOR ALL HUMANITY …. God’s perfect love IF …. IF WE ACCEPT God’s love …. If we focus in on Jesus teachings … we will strive to bring all of us together with joy! Scripture teaches us that “God’s perfect love drives out fear!!!” So, let’s take on the love don’t you think … let’s choose Jesus.

God’s perfect love is focused in on bringing positive change to the world and it begins with you and me but we need to believe … that’s all God is asking but belief in the Creator … allowing Jesus to direct us … it means leaving behind the individuals we were along with some influential friends. We cannot keep putting ourselves first and occasionally squeezing in God moments that fit our worldly aspirations or those of our friends. We must really and truly believe and have faith so that the joy can follow!

We need to be investing time into discovering again who God is … who Jesus Christ is … and then going out into the world starting right here and right now in this service of JOY! We don’t have to worry any more about our path because Jesus has lit it up … Jesus repeatedly says we don’t have to worry …. We only have to love to live for Him!

And, friends … if the angels can party when one person comes to know Jesus … <Pause> Don’t you find that remarkable that we are told that all it takes is one person coming home to God for a party to begin in heaven, I sure do. God’s not about sour faces and sadness!! God does not want God’s churches here on earth to be places of anger or where plots are laid out to exclude some folks from worshiping God.

Tonight, I need to make it crystal clear that God loves a good party with God’s faithful people!!! God’s world of the angels is PARTY CENTRAL where joy flows outward as was shown to the shepherds on that dark lonely night when after traveling by donkey and on foot for some 90 miles Mary lay back in a stable to give birth to God’s Son, Jesus Christ. A simple place for the world’s Messiah!

The world needs to discover that worshiping God is an awesome element in our lives! That heading to church should get the family excited about the joy and celebration of God’s love that will be happening here! We should want to get closer with God!

Get any good selfies yet? Are you ready to post them on your FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM, TIK TAC oops TIK TOK … whatever … tell your friends you sang the great carols of Christmas … that you smiled in church because of the joy you felt in your heart for God’s love?

<WALK AROUND> Sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord all the earth!! Sing to the Lord!! SHARE THE NEWS of HIS SAVING WORK EVERY SINGLE DAY!!!” And, today’s a great day to start sharing! “The Lord is great and so worthy of praise friends! He’s AWESOME!”

And we pause … remembering … “A child is born to us, a son given to us, and authority will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace …” Start right now by giving Him the authority and accepting the joy that comes with your relationship with God when you let go! Tonight’s the night your world begins again because this one poor child came to save the world … we need to sing out loud with joy! And, take selfies! AMEN

Sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord all the earth!!

Sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord all the earth!! Sing to the Lord!!

Sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord all the earth!!

Sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord all the earth!! Sing to the Lord!!



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