A Christmas Homily for Covenant
Covenant Baptist Church, San Antonio
December 30, 2012
Kyndall Rae Renfro
(To listen to the audio, click “play” button above. To download audio, click here.)
I saw a facebook status of a friend this week whose son said to her, “Mom, the best gifts are things you can’t buy in stores.” She smiled down at him, full of pride, until he continued, “Like my Amazon kindle. You ordered it online, right?” Isaiah prophesied about “rejoicing as with joy at the harvest, as people exult when dividing plunder,” and in my childhood experience of Christmas, the prophecy was fulfilled in this way: the “harvesting” of a great many gifts from under the tree. My sisters and I started off every Christmas by “dividing the plunder”—picking up packages, reading the tags, and distributing accordingly.
It was the “harvesting” and “dividing” of presents that defined Christmas for me as a child, but as I’ve grown older, things have lost at least some of their significance. As so often happens, your dreams and hopes for your life and for the world transform in conjunction with the pain you’ve seen and known. You experience some of life’s harshness, and you begin to yearn for that which can’t be bought with money, like health, family, hope, healing, reconciliation, justice, mercy, love. Your wish list for Santa pales in comparison to the deep prayers of your heart, your longing for wholeness in the face of brokenness. Read more →