A new star appeared in the sky, but only a few magi noticed. An angelic host proclaimed the arrival of the Messiah, but only a handful of shepherds heard the news. The Savior of the world was born, but the event was witnessed by just a few animals. For centuries the prophets had foretold of the promised Messiah, but when he came, most of the world missed his arrival.
It wasn’t because they weren’t looking, but it was because they were looking for the wrong thing. Many in Jesus’ day were eagerly anticipating the Messiah because it was their hope that he would end the Roman occupation of their land. But Jesus came for a greater purpose. That purpose was whispered to Joseph in a dream, “…you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21)
So while the rest of the nation was focused on politics, the census and taxes (Lk 2:1-3), God fulfilled His greatest promise—he sent Jesus who would forever change the relationship between God and people.
But nobody noticed.
When we get ideas in our minds as to what the promises of God will look like when they arrive, we often miss the fulfillment of that promise. We imagine our financial trouble disappearing if we could win the big sweepstakes. We imagine our work problems going away if we could get that promotion. We imagine that our issues with the neighbor will be over if we could move to a new home. It is true that God will meet our every need (Phil. 4:19), but we must also remember that He often meets those needs in unexpected ways (Ecc. 11:5).
This year has brought many unexpected things to us at South Mountain Christian Camp. One of our golf carts was stolen in the middle of the night. Two of our year-round staff members had to step down due to illness and injury. And we lost our single greatest source for camper scholarship funds. But in every situation, God had a solution worked out before we even became aware of the problem. Things which are unexpected to us are anticipated by our Father, and He always meets the need.
This year has also been a busy one for us. We had another strong Summer Camp season in which 78 of our campers received salvation. We had our busiest SEEDS season ever with over 1,200 students participating in the nature program. We also have continued the development and preparation for constructing a new cafeteria as God provides the funds for this project. In all of this, God has been our constant source and supply. We give Him praise for the work He has accomplished here this year, and we look forward with great anticipation to what He will bring our way in 2011.
Have a blessed Christmas as you celebrate the unexpected Savior!