A couple of years ago, a video from the United Kingdom went viral during Advent. The video was taken by the parents of a little girl who was deaf during a visit with Santa Claus.
As the girl sat on Santa's lap, it didn't take long for him to notice that she could not hear. And so he began to speak to her in sign language.
Because of course Santa knows sign language--come on.
I sat there watching through misty eyes as the little girl brightened and began to smile as she and Santa talked about what she wanted for Christmas.
Just a video. A moment in the midst of hundreds of thousands of other moments during this season of Advent, this season of expectation. And the reason why this kind of moment gets shared and re-shared is because it's beautiful, amazing and surprising all at once.
Some might call it... miraculous
We have been taught from an early age to expect miracles this time of year.
But when they happen--when miracles actually happen... it's like we almost can't believe they are true. We're amazed that they are possible, despite what we say we believe.
When the angel appeared to the shepherds to announce the birth of the Messiah he said:
"Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which will be for the all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord!"Like all of their fellow Jews, these poor shepherds had been longing for a miracle, for the Messiah to come, for God to rescue God's people.
And then it happened.
How did those poor shepherds respond to the miraculous? Those poor shepherds responded by running. They ran to the manger, and to Jesus.
Miracles are happening, brothers and sisters. They are happening all around us, all of the time. The kingdom of God is bursting forth, taking new ground away from the Darkness. Can you not see it? Can you not feel it?
It's almost time. Christmas Eve is almost upon us. Let's run to the manger, let's find even more capacity in our hearts to love, to hope... and to believe in miracles.
May you be filled this day with joyous expectation. May you find new vision and new awareness of the miraculous all around you. May you run headlong in joy and excitement to the Christ, who came to seek and to save all those of us who have been wandering and afraid.
And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all, now and forever. Amen.