Well, I guess we no longer have to go to Florida for Christmas! We are having a tropical Christmas right at home this year J It’s hard to believe Christmas day is just a couple of days away! I love all the traditions of this time of year…the parties and events, the music, catching up with old friends, driving around looking at the lights, and many other things.
As much as Christmas can be a joyful time of year, it can also be a very painful time of year. More than ever we can see the world isn’t as it should be and Christmas can evoke a whole range of emotions.
We were never meant to have to experience the pain of conflict and loss. The world is supposed to be like the world Adam and Eve experienced before they sinned. They had complete communion and harmony with God and the world around them.
When sin entered the world, everything was ruined. All the sadness, pain, discouragement, insecurity, regret, loss and darkness we experience is because of sin. From the very beginning we see sin brought darkness.
The older I get, the more darkness and brokenness I see in the world around me and especially in my own heart and soul.
This doesn’t sound very Christmassy I know but the Christmas cheer is coming….
Some of the pain I experience is because of wrong decisions I’ve made and other areas of pain simply come from living in a world broken by sin. In John 9 the disciples asked Jesus why a man was blind. They wondered if it was from his or his parent’s sin. Jesus said it was neither and then explained God’s purposes through that.
Recently God has shown me the reason I keep falling into certain patterns of sin is because I’m trying to go to other things besides Jesus to find healing and comfort. There are many, many things in this world that can mask our pain and brokenness but only Jesus can truly heal our hearts.
The times we feel the depth of the brokenness of the world and in ourselves are exactly why Jesus came as a helpless baby in a manger. He knew we would be helpless in the darkness and would need a merciful High priest who is able to sympathize with our weaknesses, because he was tempted in every way we are, and yet he was without sin. Because of that we can draw near to God and find mercy and grace to help in our times of need.(Hebrews 4:15-16) I love the way Isaiah says it, “the people walking in darkness have seen a great light.” Jesus is the light because He is Emmanuel, God with us. He has come to show us the way out of darkness and into a restored relationship with God so that we can have hope that one day God will wipe away every tear from our eyes when He ushers in a new creation.
Being close to the Light reveals all of my impurities but it also gives warmth and life. I am in desperate need of the light of Jesus each and every day. I don’t deserve it but I am deeply thankful for it because…
When I go to Him in my brokenness, He heals me.
When I come to Him hungry and empty, He fills and feeds me with His presence and word.
When I go to Him with my sadness and weariness, He gives me His perfect comfort and rest.
When I go to Him with my guilt and shame, He floods my life with His grace and forgiveness.
When I am at my weakest, He is at His strongest.
When I go to Him with nothing but my heart, He gives me everything.
The Light shines brightest in the darkness; let’s praise God this Christmas for that incredible truth!