II Corinthians 11:21-23 Since you admire the egomaniacs of the pulpit so much (remember, this is your old friend, the fool, talking), let me try my hand at it. Do they brag of being Hebrews, Israelites, the pure race of Abraham? I’m their match. Are they servants of Christ? I can go them one better. (I can’t believe I’m saying these things. It’s crazy to talk this way! But I started, and I’m going to finish.) [MSG]
The familiar Christmas song Do You Hear What I Hear came to mind when I read Paul’s challenge to the Corinthians. He felt foolish having to justify his credibility to them after his perseverance in teaching them the truth of the Gospel. He felt frustration over their attraction to what they saw and heard from those “egomaniacs in the pulpit.” Paul’s own plea to the Corinthians could have been these very words…
Do you see what I see?
Do you hear what I hear?
Do you know what I know?
God has used the Apostle’s frustration and the lyrics of this contemporary  Christmas song as a reminder of the servants who’ve been part of God’s preparation for me. They persevered week after week in their own preparation to teach me the reality of living a life of faith only to discover how easily I could be distracted from what they were trying to help me see, hear, know and remember. I know they’ve all walked the same path as that Apostle, faithful and sometimes frustrated.
My Christmas gift to those servants this year is that they be remembered. Only a couple will receive a note in the mail but there are others who’s names I’ve long forgotten and lost touch with. Their gift will be given with the unique delivery system only God can provide. I promise you I will remember to thank them all for being an “old friend” foolish enough to believe this gift would ever come:
I see what you see –
I hear what you hear –
I know what you know –
Listen to what I say!
The Advent has come!
“The Child, the Child sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light.”