As most of you know, Janet and I really enjoy the Hallmark channel on TV and this is the first holiday season in many years that we have had Hallmark programming to watch. At our last home, we had U-verse and some time back, AT&T dropped our favorite channel. Now, in the new place, we only have access to Brighthouse, that we aren’t crazy about, to be sure, but one redeeming feature is that we do get Hallmark.
Some time back, we started watching a series entitled “Signed, Sealed & Delivered” that is about the dead letters office and how a special unit of the post office delivers mail that seemed to be impossible to get to its intended destination. No doubt about it – it’s a feel good kind of series and both Janet and I enjoy it. With the holidays approaching, Janet noticed that there were going to be several special movies related to the same subject matter and so this evening we found the Hallmark movie channel, different from the regular Hallmark channel I might add, and started to watch a great holiday offering.
The premise of the movie is similar to the series we have been watching. Only this time, the expectation is that people are writing letters to Santa and the dead letter office is trying to deliver answers to all the kids who have sent mail to Santa. But there is one interesting twist that was quite unexpected. That is, there are letters that weren’t addressed to Santa – they were addressed to God!
I’m sitting here thinking about the last time I watched a movie, other than on some devout Christian TV channel, that had to do with reaching out to God to help with the solving of an issue. And they aren’t beating around the bush here. There are at least two different story lines about God – one of them included a small child asking God to re-unite the family in the hope that “Dad” would be home for Christmas. And then there is the story of a sick mother and her stay in the hospital on Christmas Eve. But all of us need God – whether we are the ones being helped or even when we are the ones reaching out to help others.
The content of the stories isn’t nearly as important in my book as the fact that people are appealing to God to answer their prayers. And rather than deal with issues of atheism or gnosticism, where the characters in the program are either non-believers or somehow fighting to have God removed from their lives, this program is unabashedly about God. In fact, it’s all about God.
Christmas is a gift – a special time of year to reinforce the idea that it really isn’t about Santa – it really is about God, and the memory of the birth of His Son, Jesus. Our verse for this evening is a famous verse that Jesus Himself spoke. We are told, in Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”
This Christmas season, you will run across many people who are dealing with the loss of hope, anger, loneliness and a host of other issues that almost everyone deals with sometime in their lives. My encouragement this evening is that you will pay special attention this season to people who need to have an encounter with the living God. My prayer is that you will be the hands and feet of Jesus and that you will emulate Christ by interacting with those who He considered to be “the least of these.” Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…