Wednesday, December 24, 2008
What a wonderful time of year (even without snow)! I love the trimmings of Christmas with trees and lights and candy and special meals and time off ... but this year the need to simplify stands out. Often those special trimmings distract us from the true meaning of the season. Do the cards have to go out? Do the candies need to be made? What if I wasn't in the Christmas program? Why do we try to cram so much more into this season, when there is so much to think about.
Jesus Christ is celebrated at Christmas. He came as a baby, leaving the glories of heaven and a perfect environment, to be surrounded by sin and to take all that sin upon him on the cross. We celebrate his birth, because it was through the birth that he took a human form to take the punishment of sin for us. I am so thankful for salvation. I am thankful that God calls us from all different points in life. I am thankful that God saves young, old, "good", "wicked", students, workers, moms, dads, children ...
Sandra was saved as a little girl. A faithful Sunday School teacher told her about heaven and hell and the price that Jesus paid so that we could have an eternity in a beautiful place instead of an eternity of torment in hell. She repented of her sin and trusted in Christ's work to secure her future in Heaven.
Chris heard the gospel all of his life from missionary parents. He could not grasp how it could be faith alone. It was as a 21 year old sailor in Power School that he realized that he could not help the lost condition of his "ship mates" without giving himself to Christ first. He repented of his sins and lack of faith, trusting in Christ alone to save him.
We rejoice in this season because God had a plan to redeem his creation. The child that we celebrate this season is the Savior of the world. Let's focus on that. Are you saved? Are you thankful for that salvation? Are you telling others what Christ did for you and what he can in turn do for them?