Franklin D. Roosevelt called December 7, 1941 ‘a day which shall live in infamy.’ On that morning 79 years ago our nation was attacked at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii by the nation of Japan and the United States was at war in the South Pacific. My father, an uncle and other family served in the South Pacific in the U.S. Navy during World War II. It seems that in a very real sense, everyone was involved in fighting that war.
As important as that day was in American history, it is hard to imagine that there will be untold numbers of people in these United States that will let this day pass without even realizing its significance. Even so, it will happen just that way. I hope that saddens you as much as it does me. Make sure that the people in your circle of influence are reminded of what today is.
Thousands of years before in the hills around Bethlehem another earth shaking event took place. Shepherds were keeping watch by night when something happened that would change all of recorded history. Luke records it this way,
God had entered the world of humanity in the form of a little child born in a manger in the little town of Bethlehem. A virgin named Mary had given birth to the very Son of God. The shepherds may not have completely understood everything but they knew enough to know that this was the event of all eternity. Immediately they made haste to see this thing that had happened.
For those of us who know the story it is hard for us to imagine that millions of people will let Christmas Day pass without even realizing its significance. The stores that were filled with shoppers will be closed and it will seem that all is still. Even QVC will shut down for a day. Yet many will miss the Christmas event.
Wherever your families gather this Christmas season, make sure that the story of Jesus’ birth gets told. Tell it often. Tell it for the sake of future generations or the day may come when those in our own families will miss “this thing which has happened that the Lord has told us about” (Luke 2:15). May the peace of Christ reign in your homes this Christmas!