Today’s reading is the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
It’s long. Most preachers prefer not to read the entire thing. What are we to think of all of this?
The long wait has come to an end. The prophecies have been fulfilled. The moment has arrived. It is the perfect moment - “in the fullness of time.” A Savior is born. Make straight the way of the Lord.
It is quite clear, from the Lord’s family tree, that the road to salvation was not always so straight. “Blessed is the man who takes no offense at me.” You know as well as I do that we tend to judge people based on their relationship to others. Throughout my religious life I have always worked in schools, either in a leadership role or as a chaplain. Wherever I went, I made it my number one rule NEVER to research a student’s family history. In other words, I never wanted to know what a child’s father or mother did or who they were related to. Over time, the parents would let me know (if they wanted to) what they did. By that time, they were more than willing to help the school either financially or materially. It was the best policy or lesson I ever learned and adhered to. It made such a difference when it came down to disciplining, forming and educating our students. I never once had a child say to me, “Do you know who I am?!!!!” They knew that I didn’t care at all who they were or where they came from.
Chivalry is an old world with a ton of meaning. Blessed is the man who believes when he is at the top of his game or when he is being crushed in sadness; when he is happy as can be or suffering the greatest trial of his life. “Blessed is the man who takes no offense at me.”
Not too long ago I saw the play, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever!” A wonderful family from Coppell invited me to see it and I was more than happy to spend some time with them. Their daughter had a lead role in the play. She did an amazing job! I was really impressed with the talent that was on stage and the love they all have for theatre. I always thought that acting was becoming a lost art at the small town level (or that it was restricted to schools only). I am glad to say I’m wrong.
There was one young man that played a very tiny role. His sole responsibility was to wheel in and out “Mrs. Armstrong.” She is the “strong arm” woman who always led the play but because she broke her leg was no longer able to do so. I thought to myself, would I ever play this role? Would I be humble enough to take a role like this? Would any of us?
Today, we give recognition to all the men and women that helped to bring forth the Messiah. Saints and sinners are mixed in the list: Abraham, Isaac, Ruth, Rahab, David, Solomon, Joseph and Mary. No matter how off course I get, the Lord and I can fix things up. There is no fall, no wall, no hurdle or sin that can chop, block or stop this Light from penetrating. The perfect time for God to enter the world and enter my life is when I turn (turn back) to the Lord. It is then that I find this incredible family tree just waiting for me. It is there that I find name, along with Christ's, carved in for life.