Welcome to our December blog chain post. The theme is "Gifts of the Heart" More than any other time of year we stop to reflect on those who are important to us with gifts of food, notes or special objects that show our affection, but none is as important as the gift that God gave us--His own son. That one gift from the heart of God should resonate in our hearts everyday for the rest of our lives! I hope you enjoy my contribution to the Blog Chain and hope you visit the others listed on the side bar.
Over the past decades the Christmas letter has become a tradition with many families scattered all over the country or in many parts of the world. These special communications draw loved ones closer by sharing events that have shaped their lives over the past year, including pictures of events or even videos further bridging the miles.
As I sat down to write this year's letter, I am reminded of the eternal Christmas letter-- the one that still shapes our lives today. This letter was penned from the heart of God as a lasting communication of His love for us. The Bible, Old and New Testaments are comprised of many events including our separation, our need for His council, His standards for living and of course His power. Within those pages we see His heart, His love for humanity and His plan to restore us to right standing.
Although the specific day we celebrate the savior's birth is not the actual day of Jesus birth, we celebrate in spirit and in truth. He came as announced long ago by the prophets. Everything about His arrival was predicted thousands of years before. The challenge for us in not only to read the letter, but to believe it. So how can we believe if we weren't there? How can we know if these things are true? What kind of evidence do we have to support this letter?The truth never changes, it stands the test of time, through all scrutiny and ideals-- it remains solid.
We have the benefit of hindsight, the whole story is told to us through the pages of scripture. We didn't live through each of those days as the authors did. We didn't face the challenges and dangers as they did, but we know in our hearts that those things happened as told. How do we know? Though the presence of the Holy Spirit, the legacy of Jesus coming to earth. So what happened that first Christmas?
“That night some shepherds were in the fields outside the village, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord's glory surrounded them. They were terribly frightened, but the angel reassured them. “Don't be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news of great joy for everyone! The savior—yes the messiah, the Lord—has been born tonight in Bethlehem, the city of David! And this is how you will recognize him: you will find a baby lying in a manger, wrapped snugly in strips of cloth!” Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God; Glory to God in the highest heaven and peace on earth to all whom God favors” Luke 2: 8-14 NLT
The Holy Spirit confirms to us the truth that Jesus came just as the scriptures detail. He convicts those who have not believed that Jesus is who He said He was and that they need to accept the gift of Christmas. Just like a picture of events or a video, we can see the love of God through the ages of history, His faithful love endures forever.
As you write your Christmas letters this year to those you love, don't forget to read the letter sent to you!
May the love of God and the Peace of His presence fill your homes and hearts with love!!
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