Describing the Indescribable
Some things are just indescribable and sometimes, even though it might be close, a picture doesn’t equal a thousand words. There are times that a picture doesn’t even do justice to what we witness and experience in life. How do you describe the way you felt as the brisk air swirled around you as the sun rose over the mountains casting sparkling light on the newly fallen snow? Can you describe the brilliant sunset that lit up the sky on that trip to the ocean? We can carry on about the colors, shapes, cloud formations, and transitions but when we are done, our listener only has a vague idea of what we saw, heard, smelled, or felt. The wonder of wonders that we fully experience with an awing of our mind leaves others thinking nothing more than, “how nice.” We want to share the indescribable things we experience in our life but struggle to do it successfully.
It is disappointing when we make all attempts to tell other people about a phenomenal experience of nature we saw, the magic of the musician’s sounds at the concert, or even the taste of delectable food and they just don’t get it. Even when we try to explain a special moment with those we love, we are lucky to gain a smile and encouraging word or two of “how nice.” The problem is what we see, hear, smell, taste, or feel just doesn’t transfer over to someone else. We desire to share by bottling up our experiences and passing them on. Some people are more eloquent with words than others, but no matter how great they may be it just isn’t possible to describe the sight and experience in a way that fully transfers to someone else’s mind and heart in the same way.
Telling the True Story of Christmas
As we look to the story of Christmas, we find 4 gospel writers who attempt to tell the indescribable life of Christ. Matthew and Luke are where we generally look to hear the traditional Christmas story that we know. Matthew jumps around a bit giving us a detailed historical ancestry line, a few angels, and then jumps to the wise men who came from the east a few years after Christ was born. Luke, however, gets to the facts. He tells the story from beginning to end and it is the one that most of us look forward to hearing again and again at Christmas. Mark, who writes for Peter, doesn’t even attempt to describe this indescribable event. He moves straight into the ministry of Christ and leaves out the birth completely. Then there is the gospel of John. He wants to prove that Jesus is the Son of God.
If you have ever tried to share something indescribable in your life with someone else, then you can hold sympathy for John. He gives us more than the who, when, and where of Matthew and Luke. They achieve a difficult task but something much easier than John. John with his swirling galaxies, stars, and creation, finally leads to God coming to earth. He does his best to help us see the grandeur of the earth, the sounds of majesty, and the experience of it all. John wants us to do more than just see it, he wants us to be part of it, experience it with him. So, he writes poetically as if singing a song while telling a story. He wants us to see that Christ is indeed the Son of God and that all who believe in Him will have eternal life and this is indescribable.
Translating the Indescribable
Indescribable, this must be what the shepherds felt like on that night of wonders. How does one describe multitudes of angels, heavenly hosts, bright crazy stars, and newborn babies? The scriptures don’t tell us what they understood about the event. It just tells what they saw and heard without the flourish of poetry or song. But the one thing that does stand out is that they returned praising and glorifying God “for all they had heard and seen.” The people they told their story to were “astonished” but likely didn’t understand. However, what they could see was a transformation in these men’s lives. This is where the indescribable can translate and be seen by others.
This Friday, all around the world, people will celebrate the greatest gift ever given to humankind. It is a time to sing praises loudly and glorify the birth of the Savior. But our praise and glory shouldn’t end on Christmas but instead should continue every day. How we praise God and help translate our experience of Him to others isn’t important. We can sing, tell, worship, give offerings, and live Holy lives to give Him glory every day. But it is the Christmas experience to allow ourselves to be overwhelmed with the indescribable things that God has done, continues to do, and will do in the future. This is what transforms our lives. Lives that must reflect on the majesty and goodness of God as we share our experiences with others in whatever ways we can.
Celebrating with Praise
When our hearts are full of appreciation for all that God does for us, our witness comes naturally. Allowing our praise to overflow from our hearts and mouths through continued praises daily helps translate our experiences to others. This allows them to seek their own experiences as they learn more about Him and His indescribable ways. So, sing your songs of indescribable praise daily.
Sing to the Lord; praise His name. Each day proclaim the good news that He saves.Psalm 96:2 (NLT)
Won’t you challenge yourself to celebrate the indescribable knowledge of love and faithfulness of God? Allow your convictions to root deeply in His love. Find both your motivation and comfort in knowing that the promised one is always with you as you share your experiences with others.
Be overwhelmed and celebrate the indescribable, not only at Christmas but all year long.
Wishing you and yours the Merriest of Christmases, may your celebration be fully indescribable!
Love in Christ,
Christmas is the perfect time to celebrate the love of God and family and to create memories that will last forever. Jesus is God’s perfect, indescribable gift. The amazing thing is that not only are we able to receive this gift, but we can share it with others on Christmas and every other day of the year.Joel Osteen
What are your thoughts?
Can you describe the indescribable love God holds for you? Have you allowed the love of God to translate to others by the way you live and praise God daily? Share your thoughts on the indescribable eternal life and love that God offers you.