The Medium and The Message
There’s an idea that I read about some years ago and I think it’s incredibly relevant to the Christmas season. The idea is this: The medium of the message is as important as the message itself.
Now, what do I mean by that?
A simple way of looking at it is like this: I am a communicator. I preach most Sundays, and I post online, through blogs and social media. I make simple videos like the one below. Every single one of those Sunday messages, posts and videos are, on the whole not, about me in any way, but they have a flavour of me within them. They wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for me, which suggests that as the medium of the messages that I am bringing, I am as important as the message. If I didn’t present a sermon, you wouldn’t hear the words, if I didn’t write the words down, you couldn’t read them.
I was thinking about this idea in terms of Christmas. Jesus came down amongst us as a baby – the God of the universe, who could have come in whatever form He wanted – chose to become one of us. Christ is a message of hope. He is very much the medium of the message, one that brings humanity the possibility of reconciliation and restoration with God and creation.
As much as He is hope and love in human form, He also brought a Good News message. We read about Jesus’s ministry in the Bible. He is out and about encouraging and challenging those He comes into contact with, ultimately telling people the Good News. But He does more than this, He is actually being the Good News. He shows us how to be a humble servant, and how to love and care for others.
So as we’re thinking about Christmas, let’s not forget the real ‘reason for the season’ which is Christ, not Santa, not presents, not any of that. Let’s remember who Jesus was and who He is and the message that He brought, realising that the two things are inseparable. He is both the medium and the message, which is one of hope, reconciliation, and restoration.
Have a really great Christmas, and I hope you get everything you want, just remember though that the thing that we need is always Jesus!