We were in the kitchen, making peanut butter fudge and wrapping Christmas presents while big band Christmas music filled the air. There was Dean Martin, Bing Crosby, and even a little Michael Bublé, to my brother's chagrin.
Then, almost out of the blue, a different tune filled the room. Among all the crooners, they played a beautiful piano version of "Amazing Grace. "
While wrapping a gift, I thought, "Hmmmm…. that's not very Christmasy".
But then, almost simultaneously, I realized, "Actually, it's probably the most appropriate Christmas song of all."
Because really, that is the heart and soul of the Christmas story:
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now I'm found
I was blind, but now I see
Beyond the beauty of the lights, the anticipation of the presents, and the warmth of family and friends, the true meaning of Christmas is that God sent His Son into the world to rescue lost and lonely sinners and give every person the opportunity to have a personal relationship with Him.
The true gift of Christmas is salvation.
No matter who we are, what our history is, what we've done or haven't done, because Jesus came to earth as a baby, lived as a man, died on the cross for our sins, and rose again, we can be forgiven.
More than just forgiven, we are given the opportunity to have an intimate personal relationship with the God Who created us.
As we allow Him to work in our lives, He can do more than forgive our sins. He can heal our past, restore our lives, and make us into the men and women He originally designed us to be.
This is the "good news that was meant to bring joy to all people" (Luke 2:10-12).
We have hope!
We can experience life, joy, peace, and healing!
Our lives have a purpose because of the amazing grace of God that was on display at Christmastime.
This is why we celebrate.
It's like I said in a Christmas card I designed this year (a favorite tradition on mine).
Many believe the story of Christmas ends with the shepherd and the wise men. But that’s just the beginning of the story. Jesus came and died to forgive our sins, provide us the hope of Heaven, and give us a personal relationship with our Creator. This is God’s gift of love. Our story begins when we accept God’s gift and accept Jesus as our Saviour. It’s this love, grace, and hope we celebrate this time of year.
If you aren't a Christian, this is your hope: God's amazing grace is available today. It's just a prayer away. You can pray right now with me.
I come to you today and admit that I am a sinner and that my sin is keeping me from having an intimate, personal relationship with you.
I thank You that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to die on the cross and take the punishment for my sins so that our relationship could be restored.
Father, today, I want to accept Jesus as my personal Savior. I want to begin having the personal relationship with You for which I was originally designed. Please forgive me for my sins and walk with me through every moment of my life. Help me to understand Your love for me and to love You with all of my heart.
In Jesus' name. Amen.
Now that you've prayed, you can join us all in celebrating God's amazing grace this season.
And celebrate, we will! What better reason is there to hang lights, sing songs, laugh, feast, and rejoice in all that God's grace has given us?
That's exactly what Jamie and I will be doing this season—-celebrating God's grace, His love, and all He has given us that we certainly do not deserve. And we'll have a lot of fun doing it!
I hope this is also true of your Christmas season.
I hope it will be filled with joy, family and friends, peace, and all of the beautiful things that make Christmas special as you reflect on God's grace, God's mercy, and His presence in our lives.
Have a very Merry Christmas! See you in 2024!!