Twenty-Seventh Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: The Danger of Busyness

Meditation: The Danger of Busyness When God came into the world at Christmas, people didn’t have time. They were too busy. There was no room for Him in the inn. “He came unto his own, and they that were his own people received him not.” And it seems that still today we have no room. We crowd Him out with so many things, especially with our busyness. In Luke 14:16-24, the Lord Jesus tells a

Twenty-Fifth Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Emmanuel

Meditation: Why Did He Come? This Word who now becomes flesh is the very same God before Whom the Seraphim in the vision of Isaiah covered their faces with their wings and exclaimed in fear and trembling: “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord Sabaoth!” The creature did not dare to look up. Such was the overpowering greatness of God. No man could see God and live. It is this transcendent, unapproachable, unfathomable, mysterious Word who

Twenty-Fourth Day of Christmas Advent, Mystery of Incarnation

God’s revelations are always pointed, concrete, and specific. They are not a Platonic world of ideas and theories about which you can be right or wrong, or observe from a distance. Divine Revelation is not something you measure or critique. It is not an ideology but a Presence you intuit and meet! It is more Someone than something. All of this is called the “mystery of incarnation”—enfleshment or embodiment if you prefer—and for Christians it

Twenty-Third Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Why Did He Come? (Part VI)

Meditation: Why Did He Come? Charlotte Adelsperger explained what the coming of Jesus meant to her: Christmas came for me when I allowed Jesus to outgrow swaddling clothes and wrap me in God’s love. Christmas came for me when I discovered that I am part of the flock God is watching over-even at night. Christmas came for me when I rejoiced, knowing Christ’s tidings of great joy were to all people-and I’m a messenger. Christmas

Nineteenth Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Why Did He Come? (Part V)

Meditation: Why Did He Come? Christmas means that there are two births of Christ: one into the world at Bethlehem; the other into the soul when it is spiritually reborn. Through the Holy Mysteries of Baptism and the Eucharist, Christ is born in the second Bethlehem. i.e., our hearts and minds, our souls and bodies. He that is the pre-eternal God becomes a newborn babe that we might be converted and become babes in Christ.

Seventeenth Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Why Did He Come? (Part IV)

Meditation: Why Did He Come? Christmas means that “the Word (the Eternal God) was made flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).  In an attempt to capture the monumental humiliation God endured when He took on human flesh, C.S. Lewis likens it to our becoming a worm. Yet God did that for us in order to communicate His love to us. Christmas means that Emmanuel has come: God is not

Thirteenth Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Why Did He Come? (Part III)

Meditation: Why Did He Come? Jesus himself explains why He came: “Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them, but to fulfill them” (Matt. 5: 17). “I come not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Matt 9; 13). “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10). “I have come as light into the world, that whoever

Twelfth Day of Christmas Advent, “O Give Thanks unto the Lord!”

By Father Steven Kostoff “O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever!”  (Psalm 136:1) In an article titled “A Moveable Fast,” the scholar Elyssa East summarized the history of our American Thanksgiving, and the intentions and practices of the early New England colonists toward this national feast.  Initially, she writes, Thanksgiving was built around the Christian rhythm of fasting and feasting.  Bearing that in mind, she also offered her

Ninth Day of Christmas Advent, Meditation: Why Did He Come? (Part II)

Meditation: Why Did He Come? St. Gregory of Nazianzus wrote: Darkness is loosened, light is created. The Pillar of Fire is given to Israel. Those dark in ignorance see the great light: knowledge and wisdom. Old things are finished; all is become new, the letter retreats; the Spirit prevails; shadows disappear; the truth now enters; nature’s law is overturned for heaven needs filling… What was invisible, now is distinguishable. What was untouchable now is touchable…

Thirty-Ninth Day of Christmas Advent: Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men

When the angel of the Lord brought the “glad tidings of great joy” of Christ’s birth to the shepherds in the fields, there appeared also “a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Lk 2:13-14, KJV). The songs of the Orthodox Church services, like those of the Christian West, put this doxology of the angelic choir in the mouths