Life. In Light Of Eternity.

Putting Life in Perspective…and writing stories

Archive for the tag “christmas”

Advent: 16 December

Jesus said in John 10:10

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

Jesus came so that we may have life and have it abundantly. Christ came into the world, in a manager that WE could have life. Now that statement is pretty familiar to us and has been misused by some, but let me make this connection for you today.

Jesus coming into the world as a newborn baby meant we would have new life. His earthly life beginning meant that the power of death was soon to be defeated. Christ’s coming abolished death (2 Timothy 1:10). Death’s days were numbered when Christ was born and not only that but new life would be possible through him for all who believe.

This time of year is when we consider that Jesus came into this world to have victory over death. The penalty of our sin which is death and separation from God. Was to be replaced with life, abundant life which meant forgiveness of our sin and our relationship with God being restored. That is why Christ came into the world. To bring everlasting life.

1 Corinthians 15:55-57

“O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? ”The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

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Advent: 15 December

Here is another Skitguys video (they are just so good ok, gosh)

Advent: 14 December

Christmas is family time. Normally. If you have been following along so far you will remember that I spoke about being excited for Christmas and enjoying those large lunches with family. Those were great. But as I have mentioned there came a time when the true meaning of Christmas became apparent to me and as that happened I really desired to spend the day reflecting on that, the lunches did not do that. Don’t get me wrong the meals were good, and I enjoy the time I spend with my family but we weren’t on the same page in this regard.

I wasn’t the only one in my group that felt this way. There was a group of us, saved out of families that didn’t see Christ as worthy. One Christmas we decided that we should just have dinner together. It was that day, many years ago that a tradition was started. We would have lunches with our family and then we would meet for dinner as the family of Christ for dinner. Ok it was more of a light meal / desert time since we would normally be really full from our lunches but it was a sweet time together (pun kinda intended).

This was a time we would just fellowship with one another as believers. We could reflect on what the day truly meant and we could just have clean fun together. Since that first year we have tried to to keep that tradition because we see the value of spending that time together and spending time with others that understood the reason for the season.

As you make plans for your Christmas day this year, once you have attended church to worship, ask yourself how will you be spending the day? Be intentional on spending the day with others that understand why it is a significant day.

Advent: 13 December

At this point in time you may have already heard or asked the question; “What do you want for Christmas?”. Well if you are anything like me that could be one really long and expensive list of things. My wish list is really long. But as I consider that question I have tried to flip it and ask the question; “What would I want other to have for Christmas?”. That list could also be rather long, there is a good deal of need around us. But I have boiled it down to one thing that I would want for myself and others. That one thing is to treasure Jesus Christ and give him the glory.

When all things are unwrapped this year and all the ‘thank you’s” and ‘you shouldn’t have’s’ have been said I want to be thankful for the greatest gift of Christ my saviour. I want to praise him as I remember what this day is supposed to represent. This season should be a time that we reflect on Christ’s love for us and grow in our love for him. So that is what I want for myself and for others to experience this year. A moment of reflection as I remember what this day is supposed to represent. Last year I shared an article called “What does Jesus want for Christmas” by desiring God with a similar theme which helps to drive this point home. Enjoy.

Advent: 12 December

Yesterday, I attended our church service and as we sung songs I noticed that all the songs we sung were themed around the Christmas season. Music, in case you didn’t know by the 30+ songs I have shared here already, is one of the things I deeply enjoy.  I enjoy how music can express and create emotion in us. One of the things I like about this season is the songs. No, I’m not talking about Jingle bells. Rather I am talking about songs like silent night. Good, Christian, songs that speak about the joy of our king coming to earth, songs that speak about the reason for this season.

The best part? You can find these songs playing in the malls and on radio stations that wouldn’t normally play such gospel saturated matrial. Sure there is a really good question as to why secular radio would play this type of music but I would say rather think of how you can use it to start a conversation you wouldn’t normally instead. This type of music warms my heart when I hear it. Let your heart be warmed by the classic songs as we meditate on the truth they contain.

Silent night, holy night
Son of God
Love’s pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace
Jesus Lord at thy birth
Jesus Lord at thy birth

Advent: 11 December

Luke 2:8-14

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

Advent: 10 December

Have you ever heard of Look at the book by John Piper? I really enjoy this style of teaching. This one is on ‘What child is this” which is very apt for the current season. It is longer than what we would normally post but worth it. Enjoy!

Advent: 9 December

At my church we have spent some time going through the gospel of John. There is much that can be said about what is written in John and maybe you will see more of that in the future. One thing I want to share today is this; Jesus was on a mission.

If you were to read John you can see clearly how Jesus interacts with the culture in a very purposeful way. He points out falsehood and calls out to others to trust in Him. That was his mission to redeem a people to himself. Which was the cost of the cross.

As we anticipate Christmas this year remember that this day means nothing without the cross. This holiday is only a significant holiday because it reminds us of Jesus Christ coming into the world on a mission. If there was no mission, or if He failed his mission, this day would mean nothing at all.

The mission was always to result in the cross. The cross was not an after thought but the very reason that Christ was born for. He entered the world knowing how it must end and determined to meet that end. Christmas is a foreshadowing and a light pointing us towards the cross. Both the manger and the cross is where Jesus’s love for us was displayed.

Advent: 8 December

If I were to mention the nativity scene to you what comes to mind? The story of Christ coming into the world is well known. Some shopping malls will even recreate the scene for display this season.

There was no room in the inns and Jesus enters the world and finds his bed in a manger. A manger, surrounded by animals. The saviour of the world spent his first night here on earth in a manger. Does that not strike you as strange?

Surely the Lord of all could have ensured that Jesus’s arrival occurred when there was space in an inn? This is the King of Kings! Why does he not enter in a place of comfort? He could have entered the earth to a wealthy family. A place with the best medical care available. Instead, we see him in swaddling cloths laying in a manger. This was not an accident.

Nothing Jesus did and nothing that happened to Jesus or those around him was a surprise to him. While he had power to act, He choose to humble himself and feel the raw reality of humanity without any comfort. Jesus was never here for comfort. He came to reach his people.

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:5-8

If you want to consider more read Piper on the some topic here.

Advent: 7 December

Do you remember how excited you used to get for Christmas? I remember how much of a big deal it used to be for me as a child. I knew I was going to wake up to a tree filled with lots and lots of gifts!

I would wake up early, go to our living room and just see this big pile of gifts but have to wait until everyone woke up. So I would switch on the tv and watch all the Christmas shows while I waited. That tv time and the suspense for opening the gifts was a sweet time. Then I would get lost in just unwrapping gift after gift with the family. Soon after that the house would be filled with the smell of cooking, as my gran or my mother prepared a meal for our big lunch. Lunch was a big family thing with aunts and uncles joining us (and bringing more gifts). It is a great memory. But over time the gifts got less, the family time would fade and we got busy.

I remember the statements of; “Christmas isn’t as a big a deal as it used to be” or “Christmas doesn’t feel the same”. A time came when Christmas was no longer an exciting time for me. It was just another commercialized holiday that would pass.

That was until I came to understand the true meaning of Christmas. This was a time to remember Jesus entering our world. This was about Christ and not Santa. Like how John the baptist and his mother Elizabeth were excited to know that Jesus was coming into the world (Luke 1:39-45) I now have reason to be excited again. My gift excitement replaced by worship as I remember that He came. What gets you excited?

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