6 min read

Unwrapping the gift of LOVE

Unwrapping the gift of LOVE
Who else has held the oceans in His hand?  Who has measured off the heavens with His fingers?  Who else knows the weight of the earth or has weighed the mountains and hills on a scale?…To whom can you compare God? Isaiah 40

The Christmas story is not only an account of the awesome majesty of God but of the Giver of a special gift.  For many, Christmas is a time of reflection, and sadly the story about the birth of Jesus often gets blurred with the story of Santa Claus. And since we are so familiar with both stories it can become difficult for some to separate truth from fictional myth.  Although, the importance of this distinction is vital, one is a bedtime tale, while the other is a documented fact of history.  The Christmas story is unlike any other story.  It is simple yet complex at the same time.  Additionally, it is a story filled with “wonder “and “hope.”  It is a story of wonder, because it reveals the heart of God Himself.  It is a story of hope because the truth of God’s love was not only boldly proclaimed but also demonstrated.

A valuable question that I asked myself again this season is; “Why?”  Why was Jesus born?  Actually, the Christmas story, which recounts the birth of Jesus is really the middle and turning point of the wonderful creation narrative.  Therefore, I will try to briefly chronicle the story behind the story, to help you understand why Jesus is the key to unlock the significance of the true Christmas story.

In the beginning God created by forming from nothing the heavens and the earth.  The earth was formless and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep ocean that covered the unformed earth.  The Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters.  And God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.  God saw that the light was good…Genesis 1

God went on to create each of the magnificent things we now see all around us, whether big or small.  The sun, moon, stars, mountains, valleys, trees, flowers, animals, insects; truthfully there are just too many created features to name in this short story.  But, to everything that was created, God said it was GOOD.  After God laid the foundation for His masterful creation, God then turned to create what was most precious to Him in all of His creation —US!  We were made in the image of God Almighty Himself.

The interesting point of creation that many often overlook, is that God, not only created a physical world but He also created a spiritual realm.  Understand, that humans were not the only ones given the opportunity of freewill in creation.  The angelic beings have this same freedom as well.  Enter the villain of the story, Lucifer, also known as satan.  Originally, he was the most beautiful of all the angelic hosts and Lucifer was in charge of the angelic worship of God.  That was until he became jealous of us being God’s special treasure.  As a result, this caused satan’s narcissistic pride, to transform into the driving force behind his overwhelming desire to seek worship for himself alone.

It was to that end, that satan made the calculated choice to mar the splendor of God’s creation, and set out to take hostage what mattered most to God … once again that is you and me.  I guess you can say that satan was the first terrorist, and has been the role model for terrorist actions throughout history ever since.  This is where we come to the “wonder” of this story, the revealing of the heart of God.

For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world, that He [even] gave His [One and] only begotten Son, so that whoever believes and trusts in Him [as Savior] shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3

Don’t miss that it says; “God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world”, whereas that sets the stage for what comes next.  As a demonstration of God’s heart for His creation, we now arrive to rescue part of this story… the birth of Jesus, which is also the “hope” in the true Christmas story.  Because you see, satan caused a brokenness in our world that has brought with it a darkness that engulfs the very existence of life.  As we look around us, we see the evidence of hardened hearts producing death and destruction.  At every turn, we witness those who act out in angry hate filled rage, cruelty, abuse, and murders.  All of these hostilities expose what has become the insanity of man’s inhumanity to man.  It was into this darkness, that Jesus chose to unveil His light in a most unusual way. As Jesus entered into His creation, He came into this world, the same way we did. Born as an infant, the infinite God bound Himself to the growing pains of this world … He wept, He was tired, He was hungry, He was tempted, and He was betrayed.  Moreover, this monumental choice will forever be reflected in God’s creation.

So the Word[Jesus] became human and made His home among us.  He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness.  And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.  The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it. John 1

If we read too quickly through this story, it will be easy to miss that the birth of Jesus is the part of the story that is unparalleled to any other story.  Think about it. God was able to do what no human creator could ever do.  He became a part of His own creation.  The depth of these words are staggering for me to assimilate.  They are proclaiming that an infinite God, willingly limited Himself to the confines and constraints of the fragile human body.  So that I could truly grasp the enormity of this and honestly interpret the great lengths God was willing to endure to display His love not only for me but for you also,  I grappled with the meaning of “infinite.” Webster defines infinite this way; “extending indefinitely: ENDLESS, immeasurably or inconceivably great or extensive: INEXHAUSTIBLE, subject to no limitation or external determination, extending beyond, lying beyond, or being greater than any preassigned finite value however large, extending to infinity.”

No one has ever seen God. But the unique One[Jesus], who is Himself God, is near to the Father’s heart.  He[Jesus] has revealed God to us. John 1

Yes, the Christmas season reminds us that we need a time for reflection.  Take this moment to realize that Jesus was actually willing to be born, and willing to display to all His creation the grandeur and glory of the unseen infinite Creator God.  God’s choice to enter this world was not only intended to deliver and salvage His creation, but Jesus came to ransom and set the captives free.

Jesus spoke to all the people, saying, “I am the Light of the world.  Anyone who follows Me will not walk in darkness.  He will have the Light of Life.” John 8

Now, this is your opportunity to become part of the Christmas story.  Jesus rescued me from the darkness.  I was given a new beginning and with that a new life.  Jesus is my true hero and SAVIOR!  I will follow Him always — for all eternity, which has become the best part of my redemption.  In this CHRISTmas season the ultimate gift of love is ready to be received and unwrapped…

But to all who believed Him[Jesus] and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.  They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God. John 1

         Christmas Blessings to All!