One of my favourite Christmas presents growing up was a Nintendo 64! I can still remember the excitement now. We thought we had opened all our presents, only for Dad to enter the living room with just one more! We ripped through the wrapping paper to find the games console, and excitedly got it setup to play the latest instalments of Super Mario and Mario Kart.
The N64 replaced the Super Nintendo, and there was a common problem with games consoles like these – the games would freeze just as you would get somewhere good in the game! Ultimately there was only one way to fix it, take out the cartridge and blow the dust out from the bottom. That was how to fix the glitch.
Technology has come so far in the last few decades, but it's all had its glitches. The stuttering cassette tape, the CD Rom that built up scratches over time, the USB stick that was great for storing files on, until it became 'corrupt' and you lost everything. Now it's all in a cloud somewhere, if there's a glitch – don't worry – it's backed up on a cloud somewhere else.
I'm sure we've all done different things in our lives to try and fix a technical glitch, whether it was blowing the dust from a games cartridge, unwinding a cassette tape or the horror of having to go downstairs and reset the WIFI!
When you look around in the news today, it's clear we live in a world full of glitches. A broken society waiting on the next scandal to break or the latest news of a horrific terrorist attack. There's so much pain and unrest in the world we live in.
And then there's our own lives, we don't have to look far to see how broken things can be. Relationships breaking down, sickness, financial pressures, all kinds of things that remind us that there's a glitch in the system. Things aren't the way they should be.
We're left longing for a better life, we wish we looked different, we hope people will treat us better, we long for a solution, a miracle cure, if only we could win the lottery – then everything will be fine.
Maybe we find a fix but then the next glitch comes our way.
The Bible explains why we go through this cycle of a world full of glitches:
All throughout humanity we have tried to find our own ways to fix the glitch. We've turned to different vices, maybe it's relationships, we withdraw, we become passive, isolated, we overeat, overdrink, overmedicate, overwork, escape into movies, tv, social media, fantasy, we overspend – we try to find our own ways to fix the glitch.
How would you fix the glitch of humanity? Perhaps you would fight, you would campaign, or you would turn to some of those vices I've just mentioned.
God always had a plan to fix the glitch of humanity, but it's not how you or I would expect, it's certainly not the way we would have thought to fix things.
He did it by sending a baby, to rescue us. He sent His one and only Son, Jesus, into the world to be like you and me. Only He was different, He was the Son of God, the perfect one.
"Out of sheer generosity [God] put us in right standing with Himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we're in and restored us to where He always wanted us to be. And He did it by means of Jesus Christ" (Romans 3:23)
There's a glitch in the system. Maybe you're tired of trying to fix it yourself. This Christmas, realise the meaning of why Jesus came as a baby, to save you, to bring you forgiveness and hope for the future. To fix the glitch in the system.