The First Christmas
Bible Text: John 3:16, Luke 2:1-20, Romans 5:8, John 1:12 | The First Christmas
As we celebrate this Christmas, we may find ourselves in situations that are less than joyful. Some of us may be in pain, facing difficulties, uncertainties, and financial reversals. We are not going out of our comfort zones, but looking for one, this Christmas season.
You may be lonely, sick at heart and fighting some disease. Perhaps as you watch the world celebrate, your heart weeps for lack of the ingathering of family and friends. You may not have a feast, and may not even have one morsel of food that differs from your daily life. There may not be a Christmas tree, no decorations and no gifts. You may not have been able to buy one gift for another. For you, this day is a challenge to survive, endure, as you endeavor to overcome the many trials you face today.
The first Christmas was not a beautiful scene. Mary brough forth the Christ child in pain. She was rejected and despised as she went to her own place of birth, to give birth. There was no room for her in the inn, and she had to stay in the stable with Joseph, where baby Jesus was born. They were poor. They had inadequate food. The trip there was grueling as she was great with child. When she arrived, there was no place of rest. The king would be born, but unrecognized and unreceived by the World.
Although we sing the song, Away in a Manger, that says “…No crying he makes,” that is not reality. Jesus wept as a baby. He wept as a child. He wept as a man. He was born to die and his destiny was the cross. The virgin Mary’s heart would be pierced with sorrow at the death of her beloved Son. Her privilege would also be her pain. Jesus was wrapped in swaddling clothes, not nice apparel. He was stripped of all His riches in glory to wear the rags of poverty, so that you would be brought into the family of GOD and have His riches that be in GLORY by Christ Jesus forevermore.
The manger scene was not a comfortable place for them, but we seek to celebrate this lowly birth with all the frills and food and fun and feasting and gift giving that is possible.
If your Christmas is filled with less than comfort and joy, and you are not sharing this day with surrounding friends and family for festivities, and no one has a gift for you, you have this assurance. This day we celebrate the birth of the Savior and Lord.
The life that you live, is no longer lived in the flesh. The joy of the LORD, who became your Savior, Deliverer, Redeemer, and Lord, is the unspeakable gift that keeps on giving. Eternal life and eternal destiny is yours. You are an heir of GOD, a joint heir of Jesus Christ. You have become a son of GOD because you believe in Jesus, who will NEVER leave you nor forsake you. You are part of the family of GOD who may be scattered throughout the nations, and many are already in heaven. You have an identity, a reputation in Heaven even if you lack notoriety on earth. GOD recognizes you even as He and the angels rejoiced at the birthing of Jesus.
Your rebirth caused the angels to sing. They celebrate you, as your life becomes a living sacrifice onto GOD. You are special and you are indeed richly blessed to be in the kingdom of GOD, even if you have no place here on earth to call your own.
The Healer has been born, given, and lives forevermore. He happens to be your Savior and LORD. Celebrate that you have eternal life, that you belong to Him, that your position in the Kingdom of God is secure and everlasting. You have a new name written down in glory. You are saved and not lost. You have the greatest gift, and the gift that you give is yourself, as you reach those who dwell in darkness with His light that is in you. You are part of the body of Christ, and you have a purpose to impact those that you encounter every day.
It does not end here. Your last step on earth will become your first step on streets of gold. There you will be rewarded with gold, silver, precious stones for your labor of Love to the Lord. Your treasure is in heaven, reserved or you, where no thief can steal it, there will e no loss, no decay, but forever in your possession as proof that you suffered with Him, and there you will reign with Him forever and ever. You will be glad that God sent His Son, for you, and you will rejoice that you have been redeemed by the SON of GOD, who gave His life for you, that you might have eternal life.
Regardless of your unpleasant circumstances, REJOICE in the LORD. For truly you are blessed beyond measure. Celebrate Jesus. He is your everything and All. He daily loads you with benefits. He supplies your need, HE is your ever present help in times of trouble. He is your life, and HE IS YOUR GOD. Let us celebrate life in Him, for indeed GOD so loved the World that He gave His only begotten Son, Jesus so loved you that He gave His life for you, and He lives in you now, and you are blessed!