This letter gives us another secret to growth and change to those of us who are feeling a little bit complacent. Maybe we feel a little more bored than blessed when we connect with church … Perhaps we feel a lot more attached to this world than we’d like - (who doesn’t struggle with that?) and looking us straight in the eye Jesus says - “I want you to see your need as you never have before. Then I’d be able to meet your need as I never have before.”
John writes this way to the church in Laodicea - “To the angel of the church of Laodicea write, ‘These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. I know your deeds that you’re neither cold nor hot … I wish that you were one or the other … But you don’t realise you’re wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you get from me gold refined in the fire so you can become rich and white clothes to wear so you can cover your shameful nakedness salve to put on your eyes so you can see.” (Revelation 3:14 ff)
Not easy words from Jesus but they end with his remarkable promise - “Look! I am standing at the door and I’m constantly knocking. If anyone opens the door I will come in and I’ll fellowship with him; I’ll relate to him, I’ll dine with him and he’ll fellowship with me.” (Revelation 3:20 – Message)
We spend much of our Christmas season searching – searching for the perfect gift, searching for the bargains, searching for just the right decoration, searching for a parking spot.
Many people at the very first Christmas missed it because they were too busy. They were searching for other things. The politicians missed the first Christmas. The business community missed the first Christmas. The innkeeper missed the first Christmas. Even the religious establishment missed the first Christmas. They were just looking at other things.
The only people who really enjoyed the very first Christmas were the people who were looking for it – shepherds and wise men. Luke tells us - "The angels told the shepherds, `You'll find the baby wrapped, in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And the shepherds said, “’Let's go and see!’” (Luke 2:12&25) and Matthew says of the wise men - "We've come from the east, and we've come to worship Him." (Mathew 2:1&2)
When we search and find Jesus at Christmas we also find three gifts. We find forgiveness, peace of mind and eternal life. And they’re something worth searching for!