This Christmas, as I contemplate the true meaning of the holiday, I am brought back not just to the birth of my Savior, but to the reason for His coming–to save me and my fellow sinners from our sins. So, this Christmas I think through not just the nativity but all the way to Calvary and beyond.
Speaking of beyond, I think of so many of my friends who have lost loved ones this year–spouses, siblings, children, grandparents, parents, unborn children, close friends. On one side, I can almost see them singing with the choir of angels, “Gloria in Excelsis Deo!” Then I started thinking, at this time of year when we celebrate the birth of our baby King, the very miracle of His birth means that God Himself gave up His Son from the glories of heaven for a while too. And I pray for those who have a painful glimpse into the glories of God’s great Sacrifice.
This Christmas, help me to focus on Christ and not get caught up in the hustle and bustle of this holiday season. Let me show those I come in contact with the glories of your mercy and grace and love–whether it be family or friends, or those in the grocery store or shopping mall, or even on the roads–let me be an example of your patience and peace, and forgive me of my own impatience and selfishness. Whether there be snow or sunshine, whether we be near our loved ones or far away, whether we have great sorrow or great joy, great wealth or great need, may Christ shine His light and likeness into our lives–a light that is greater than even the star that shone over Bethlehem many years ago. And may I cling to the cross where King Jesus shed his blood on my behalf to save me from my sins to the glory of His great grace.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
This was a compelling clip. As a Christian, am I actively sharing Christ? Or am I just part of a religious club? Am I more concerned about discussing Christianity or about seeing souls saved and lives changed for the glory of Christ? Do I focus on the fellowship or on Christ and His Mission? When was the last time I shared the Gospel of Christ with someone–a neighbor, a classmate, a coworker, a friend, the restaurant server, or grocery cashier? This video is thought provoking and worth the watch…
Here are some more thoughts: Do I attend church to “get” something or to “feel good” about myself, or is church a place to worship Christ together with other believers, to encourage one another, and to edify one another (which may also mean the occasional rebuking in love with a spirit of truth and grace) so that we might grow together in Christ and that Christ might be glorified? Am I living out the Gospel or just being another “consumerist Christian”–showing up to church on Sundays…and even on Wednesdays, making sure I make an appearance at church suppers and special activities; but then walking out the door as if I’d never been inside? When I leave the church doors, am I forgetting the body of Christ? Or are they a part of my day-to-day life? Do I go about my life–at work, at home, on vacation, running errands, whatever–as if I am in the same rat race that the rest of the world seems to be in? Am I too busy bickering and debating with my brothers and sisters in Christ to realize there’s a spiritual war going on all around us? Am I allowing my heart and mind to be changed by the Word? Am I impacting others around me for Christlikeness? I have one life to live–how am I using it for Christ? Am I using it for Christ? Just some food for thought.