A Christmas Message from Renaut van der Riet

As I entered this Christmas season, the song that’s been in my head, oddly enough, is a song from one of my favorite Christmas movies—the one I love to start Christmas with—a Christmas movie that’s about someone who tries his very best to steal Christmas from a beautiful little village. As you know, the Grinch works diligently to try to steal Christmas away. And that video, in its old school form, starts with a song. And that song is called “Welcome, Christmas!” The little people in Whoville sing this beautiful song at the beginning of the movie welcoming Christmas into their hearts and into their village, and they pull out the woo boo hoo bricks, they pull out the pantukas, and they pull out tinsel and they start creating a world with Christmas. I’ve been thinking a lot this December, as we enter the season, how much 2020 has done to try and steal away what we’re entering into and trying to make our future look at bleak and difficult as it possibly could.

But as we enter into Christmas, there’s something profoundly wondrous about this time of year. And it’s not simply tinsel and lights and goodwill toward one another (which we certainly have been in need of). It’s actually a very particular light. And that’s exactly what the song says. The song says “Welcome Christmas, welcome, welcome, bring to us your light.” And this light that Christmas is supposed to bring to us is what has the potential to transcend us beyond the challenges in which we’ve walked, and walk us into a space where we can prepare our hearts and minds for a wonderful Christmas despite the circumstances, and a great anticipation for what’s to come.

Listen to the full audio now!

About Renaut van der Riet

Renaut van der Riet was born and raised in South Africa, and now lives in the Winter Garden area with his wife, Brooke, and their eight children. Renaut has been extremely active within the faith and nonprofit communities throughout his life. In 2002, after moving to Florida from California, he founded Mosaic Church in Winter Garden. Since then, he and Brooke, have also founded Axum Coffee Company and Love Made Visible, two nonprofits that support social justice initiatives. Renaut also serves as an Executive Committee Member at the YMCA of Central Florida, and has been on the Executive Committee Board since 2012.