By: Tim Sader
On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. (John 7:37)
In November Sammy and I spent three trips together and when Thanksgiving came we felt there was a lot to be thankful for. In a year since we met we were doing what felt impossible to us and we were thankful to all the people in our lives making it possible. It can always be thanksgiving if we will have a thankful heart for everything the Lord has blessed us with. With Christmas coming we had to save up money so we could buy gifts and afford a trip to spend it together. Sammy orders most of her gifts online mostly from Amazon but I wasn’t used to that yet so I only ordered a few movies on there, the rest I bought at store. I mostly went with an owl theme for her gifts because she likes owls. I bought Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’hoole movie, an owl shirt, a desktop owl figurine and a few pairs of silver owl earrings. The main things I remember her giving to me that year was a Sony mp3 player and a Clemson Tigers Hoodie. The main thing we wanted that year was quality time; the gifts really didn’t matter as long as we were together. We booked a room in Summerville for the 23rd through the 26th then Perry and Darleen went to see her son David, his wife Rachael and grandson little David in Virginia and we stayed with Sammy until the 28th. On Tuesday when we got to town we checked in at the hotel then went to Sammy’s house and spent the evening with her and her family. On Christmas Eve Day I hung out with Sammy in her room and we watched Hallmark movies until we had dinner and went to Church. The service was about us not getting what we want but what we need. When Jesus came he really wasn’t what anyone was wanting or looking for but he was exactly what was needed to fulfill the scriptures. After the service we went back to her house to have Christmas with her nephews and exchange a few gifts with Sammy’s sister. I bought them some wine, meats and chesses and they bought me and Sam silly tee shirts we had to wear on Christmas. Mine said Ballin So Hard with Christmas balls on it and Sammy’s looked like an ugly Christmas sweeter. The next day was Christmas so the family got together at Perry and Darlene’s house around noon. We ate and then exchanged gifts and hung out for several hours enjoying family and listening to Christmas music.
For the longest time Christmas for me and Sammy had lost it’s magic because she missed her Mom and I missed my brother. They seemed to be the ones in our families that cared most about the holidays so it just wasn’t the same. We couldn’t have the ones we wanted there but what we needed to care about Christmas again is eachother and together it is special again. Christmas is the day we celebrate Jesus birth but many biblical scalars believe He was born during the Feast of Tabernacles. This makes sense because normally a 9 month pregnant woman wouldn’t be traveling without good reason. She wouldn’t need to be present when Joseph signed the census so the two very likely were during this one trip they were taking (Lk. 2:1-21). If this is when Jesus was born I got to thinking what did he do on His birthday. One year after feeding the 5,000 and walking on water we find out where he was during the festival. His brothers in Galilee wanted Him to go with them to Judea but His time had not yet come. Maybe He was waiting on His birthday so he could go and make Himself known. Halfway through the festival Jesus began to teach and the people were amazed. On the last and greatest day of the festival Jesus stands and proclaims if anyone is thirsty come and let them drink. If we believe He can satisfy our thirst for the Spirit will have living water flow from us (Jn. 7:1-39). This fulfilled scripture where Zechariah said on that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem (Zec. 14:8). Jesus too many in the crowd isn’t who they want but He will always be what we need. The rest of our holiday time together we didn’t do much we only enjoyed time together which was needed for our relationship to continue growing.
Lord help us to use teaching about you to help find what we need even if it means giving up on some of what we want. I ask that we would be thirsty for your Spirit so that you can satisfy us and so a river of living water will flow from us. From that river I ask that others would come to our shores for refreshing and find you too. We ask that the birthday of our Lord be celebrated regardless of what day it was. Help us to see you as our only need until you become all that we ever wanted. In Jesus name, Amen.
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No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16