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I have been playing Lauren Daigle’s song “Light of the World” on repeat all Advent long. It opens with the words:

The world waits for a miracle,
the heart longs for a little bit of hope,
O come, O come Emmanuel…

It strikes me that we have found ourselves, once again, waiting. Waiting for a miracle. I don’t know what miracles you’re waiting for this season. But I know you aren’t alone in the waiting.

I keep thinking about that night when Jesus the Messiah came into this world. Born to a mom who was not feeling ready (mothers rarely do), a father who could not quite believe all that had transpired, and the target of a search by powers that wanted him killed. All that mess. All that fear.

And yet, he arrives, as babies always do. And this One, somehow, the light of the world.

Dear church, Jesus still arrives.

Whatever deep night you find yourself in the midst of. No matter the economic and political uncertainties that belie us. Whether or not we are ready or able to comprehend it fully. Jesus still arrives.

Into our mess. Into our uncertainty. Into our grief and our fear.

Jesus is there.

I can imagine the night he was born, the tumult of the world he entered, and the depths of fear and heights of uncertainty. When I think about all of that, I am strangely heartened. The world then no more chaotic than the world now. And he still showed up. Unafraid to enter in. Willing to humble himself, empty himself, and take on human flesh so that we might know the lavish abundance of God’s love. All so that we might be saved.

Into our world, Jesus still arrives.

Whatever miracle you are waiting for with bated breath this Advent and Christmas season, I pray you would know the fullness of the birth of Jesus the Messiah and the miracles therein.

I pray into your world he would come in ways you can see, know, and understand.

In ways that leave you utterly transformed.

Merry Christmas!

In Christ,
Bishop Regina Hassanally
Southeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA