“For there is born to you this day, in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord!”  Luke 2:11

You is one of those amazing words in the English language (Sie – German, Anata – Japanese, Wewe – Swahili, Usted – Spanish, and on and on, please take no offense if I did not include your language).  For at least in english, you can be singular as in: “You, Doug” (which can mean only Doug), or plural “You out there” (which means all who are out there).  Yet here is the interesting thing, If I’m talking to three people and I say “you” as I’m pointing to all three then the context is both plural and singular.  That is, it applies to all three, but not just when all three are together.  It applies to each as individual as well as the three together.  That is the Christmas Blessing for You (and me) to this very day.

We know the story.  Shepherds watching their flocks by night.  In some cases people see them cold, shivering by a fire, clouds of breath steaming from their mouths.  That kind of detail we don’t have.  But here’s what we do know; they were separated.  Their flocks would not have been let into Bethlehem at night.  Sheep can be smelly, dirty animals so, until they were needed in some respect, they would have been kept at a discrete distance.  So to protect them, the shepherds would have been isolated as well.  Whatever was happening in Bethlehem, no matter how important, would go unnoticed by them.  Nor would the town-folk be much obliged to run out and let them know what was going on if some big event happened.  No, the shepherds were on their own.

But the shepherds were not separated from God Almighty.  Something big, huge, Miracle of Miracles, was happening in Bethlehem and God wanted to make sure, everyone, even the least heard about it.  The Messiah was being born!  The Savior of the world was coming down to His people.  And the Angel of the Lord proclaims it: “born to you this day, a Savior…”  So let’s be clear about this; the Angel of Lord did not say: “You Shepherds, You, people of Israel, You people living in 1 B.C., You……”  No the Angel of the Lord, simply, powerfully and blessedly said “you”.

That “you” for us, Dear Sisters and Brothers, is the most merciful, most blessed, most joyous kind of you.  For it is both the singular: You Pat, You Reverend Lumwira, You Rodrigo, You ____________ (put your name in that blank), as well as  the entirety of You, the whole world You.  The you of the Angel of the Lord, is not only a 1 B.C. “you”, but also a 2014 “you” and a 2100 or until the end of time “you”.  We are all connected by that “you”.  We can never claim that Jesus Christ didn’t come for you or you, but only for me.

Yet sadly, although He came as a Savior for you, there are some, many in fact within that population of “you”, that never receive Him.  They reject the notion that He ever came, or even that they are in need of Him in the first place.  Why?  For some it was and is the method.  A Savior, a King of Kings, does not come as baby of peasants.  A Messiah does not grow up a carpenter’s son.  The Son of God on earth is a conqueror, a triumphant figure who destroys any and all enemies and lifts His believers along with Him into a life of luxury, painless, constant fun and enjoyment.  Alas, others feel they are so inwardly good, that they have no need of saving in the first place.

In both of those cases, we know better.  You see what if Christ had come as the worldly destroyer of enemies, conquering all the nations of the time, utterly wiping the Romans off the map and elevating the Israelites and those others who believed in Him, along with Him to world domination.  Even if that would happened, upon death, each of those people would have been lost.  For as Christ would have been perfect, His followers would have still been under the condemnation of sin.  If Christ would have lived in worldly glory and returned to heaven without death, our death, our eternal separation would have remained.  In a mystery far too deep to truly understand, in a sacrifice too great to truly grasp hold of, Jesus Christ, the One True Son of God, Jesus Christ, to become our Savior, had to die in our place.  He had to die a terrible, humiliating, becoming sin, separated from God, kind of death.  Then and only then, did He become the Savior of us all.

Please Sisters and Brothers, Our Heavenly Father meant you.  He included you.  His Son died for you.  He loves you!  Accept that love.  Be that you, that saved you, in Him.  Reach out in love to all the other yous that are included in that you proclamation. He did it for you.

Our Most Gracious and Heavenly Father, we can not begin to fathom the enormity of the gift which is Your Son Jesus Christ as our Savior.  Because it is almost beyond contemplation, we find ourselves at times, taking the gift for granted, living as if the gift didn’t matter or worse, turning away from the gift altogether.  Forgive us Most Merciful Father.  Pour out Your Spirit in us that we might be humbly grateful and rejoicing like the heavenly host at the proclamation of our Savior’s birth.  Help us to live as saved people in a world filled with so many lost.  That in and through our lives we would be proclaimers of and partakers in the merciful, blessed gift of Your salvation.  In the Name of Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen

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