But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the City of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2: 10-12)
Monday, December 24, 2012
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
By Mark Young
The meaning of Christmas can easily get lost to our annual holiday traditions. You know the routine: searching for that perfect gift, trying to fit in every last party, visiting every good friend, trying to make magic for children—memories they’ll never forget. So much to do that we might forget to stop, take a breath, and try to remember what Christmas really means.
Perhaps the best gift of all we can give ourselves, and those we love, is a moment of reflection. About a moment in history when God reached down to earth and gave us His most precious gift—His son, Jesus Christ. This precious baby, born in a lowly stable to a virgin, would someday offer Himself as a sacrifice so that you and I might be saved from eternal separation from God.
God provided this Christmas gift because He loves each one of us. Almighty God! Creator of the universe! He loves you and me. He wants to have a personal relationship with us. Hard to image? Yeah, me too. Time and time again, though, God demonstrates this desire throughout history. He continues to beckon to us today.
How important are you to God? He allowed his only Son, Jesus Christ, to come down to earth and walk among us. Not as a rich and powerful man, but as a carpenter’s adopted son, a God-man who chose to experience—along with us—what it means to be human in all its frailties. And He did it without sin, so that someday he might be the perfect offering on our behalf.
We live in a fallen world. We are in this condition because God allowed us free will, a free choice. He did not want a relationship with robots or slaves. He desired a relationship with those who are free to choose who they wish to serve.
So we must choose. Everyone must make up their own minds because He gave us that freedom. Whom do you wish to follow? I choose this God of love.
Looking at the Christmas manger scene brings it all back to me. A symbolic image of just how much God cares. That He desires that we know Him, that we talk with Him, that we tell him about our hopes, fears, hurts, and concerns. That we tell Him just how much He means to us. How much we appreciate what He has done.
This is what Christmas is about—God’s love.
So, I think I will take this moment and remember. And, my Christmas wish for you? That you will find a moment, too. Enjoy the holidays.