I think you’ll be hard pressed to find someone who hasn’t seen Home Alone. Some might even say it’s the quintessential Christmas movie.
Some 30 odd years later, Home Alone remains one of the highest grossing Christmas films in North America. Kevin is inadvertently left home alone while his family is on their way to spend Christmas in Paris. Throughout the movie Kevin tries to adjust to being on his own while defending his home from two burglars. The movie navigates us through this unplanned situation and is full of funny moments.
As we approach Christmas this year, it feels like we might be facing our own ‘home alone’ moment, except nobody’s laughing…yet.
2020 has truly been one for the books. Who would have thought 365 days ago that you’d be reading this in the midst of a global pandemic. Birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, summer holidays, farewells, even funerals all looked a lot different from what we’ve ever experienced. To top it all off we’re presently in a state of uncertainty about what Christmas will look like for us and our families. Many are experiencing loneliness, depression, fear and anxiety.
You know there’s a story in 1 Kings 19 about Elijah experiencing some of these same emotions. I can’t get fully into it here (because…word count), but have a read of this story in the Bible when you’re done reading this. In a nutshell, Elijah (yes, the one who was fed by ravens and performed the miracle of filling the widow’s jar with oil) was being hunted by Jezebel. Elijah was on the run and he was afraid. He got so low that he prayed “I have had enough, Lord,”... “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors” (1 Kings 19:4).
Despair, fear of the unknown, anxiety and some might even say, depression got a hold of this great man of God. He felt alone.
One of the most tender moments of this story is that in the midst of these emotions, God was WITH Elijah. In 1 Kings 19 you’ll read that an angel and even the Lord himself appeared to Elijah. Elijah didn’t shy away from telling his God about how he was feeling (vs 10 - 13). And in response, in verse 15, God told Elijah to “Go back”...and then reminded Elijah about the 7,000 others in Israel who still served Him (v 19).
If you can relate to Elijah, can I ask you to ‘Go Back’? Go back to where you last met with God, go back to your testimonies from the past, go back and remember God’s faithfulness to you, don’t stay where you are.
Then I want to encourage you to get connected! God reminded Elijah about the community of believers that he had access to. The devil is in his glee when he can get us isolated, when he can make us feel alone. I say ‘feel’ because the truth is that we are never alone. God is always with us.
So, this Christmas remember you’re not ‘home alone’…God is with you and you have a church family that wants to connect with you.
Praying God’s peace and his joy over you and your families this Christmas season.
Submitted by Pastor Tricia Wright.