Thousands of people will visit local churches with friends and family this holiday season to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas. God has revealed His heart by displaying the greatest gift ever given. He has invited us into the greatest story ever told.
Did you know that God loves to give gifts? His gifts are not contingent on our circumstances. All other religions require us to come and fulfill obligations. The God of the Bible drew near to us to reveal His passion for relationship and to heal it. He gives freely out of the overflow of His heart. Christmas reminds us of His extravagant love. Jesus, the free gift that God has given to us all, is also the greatest expression of hope, love, joy, and peace.
Jesus came in the most vulnerable way possible: as a little baby, born in a manger, in a humble stable. This is utterly shocking. It disarms our sensibilities and should speak volumes to us about Him. He is not angry or distant or disengaged. He came near, in all of His innocence, with tenderness and profound humility to share in our humanity. No other god draws near to us, but He understands and empathizes. His approachability beckons us.
God wants relationship with you. He knows you. He knows your trials and difficulties. He shared in it as a real man. His body bore your pain and grief and sorrow. He is not indifferent to it. He made a way for you to enter into His life where real hope, love, joy, and peace are found.
In the midst of your story hope shines through as a second chance to bring restoration and healing. He makes the impossible situation a miraculous story. In the hardest and darkest seasons of life, He crafts unexpected stories of breakthrough. Hope is an anchor. With God, all things are possible. He works behind the scenes to surprise us with His goodness. He is near to all who call upon Him – This is true hope.
His love is unconditional. He is love. It’s not just something He gives; it’s who He is. Our heart and soul is restored when we experience that level of matchless love. It is so far beyond what we are used to. When we experience God’s love and encounter His extravagant emotions for us, our hearts are freed to love deeply with courage and strength.
When we understand that we are loved by Him, regardless of our past, we can walk in joy – Joy of knowing we are fully accepted by our Creator. We were made for Him, to be enjoyed by Him and to enjoy Him forever.
He is a good Father who wants to be with us. His peace envelops us as we enter into right relationship with Him. When we understand and believe that Jesus came to restore this relationship, peace and trust become the soil where new life grows.
This relationship starts with a simple, honest conversation. The key players in the story of Christmas were normal people, just like us. But they began an unexpected journey of partnership with God, and their lives were changed forever. This Christmas, discover the gift of God in Jesus Christ.
We invite you to visit your local church to begin your own unexpected journey.