“The Hidden Miracle of Christmas”
What does grace feel like? A warm embrace? A forgiving parent? A loyal friend? Grace is one of those esoteric Christian words that is hard to explain. Well, here goes.
John 1 tells us that Jesus is the fullness of grace and truth. Fullness means that Jesus isn’t half-grace, half-truth but really 100 percent grace and 100 percent truth. This paradox is hard to wrap our minds around. I picture a glass with two pitchers of water, one filled with grace and the other with truth. Intuitively, I would think God would pour half grace and half truth into the glass. In reality, however, God stands there, perhaps with a grin, and pours both pitchers, the whole pitchers, into the glass until it’s overflowing, making a huge mess. This is the fullness of grace and truth.
What do we do with grace? Grace is that unmerited mercy and favor we find in the world. It has small beginnings, like an 8-year-old girl giving up her seat for a pregnant woman on the bus. It can be subtle, like leaving a big tip for a barista struggling to make ends meet. Or it can be dramatic, like hosting hundreds of homeless friends for Christmas supper. But no matter how it is given, grace is never deserved. We don’t deserve grace, and yet we receive it. Should we not also be giving grace to those that don’t deserve it?
Being a Jesus follower means that grace is in us. It means we get to lean into that revolutionary love, that undeserved grace. By the time our brains recognize that we have sinned and should seek forgiveness, Jesus has forgiven us dozens of times over. Why? Because Jesus is the fullness of grace. Grace doesn’t care if you are conservative or progressive or if you grew up Christian or are just now seeking God. Grace is freely available from now to eternity. Grace has no favorites, knows no limit, and sees no end.
This Christmas, ask yourself, “Where have I experienced God’s grace?” Reflect on that. You’ll be surprised to realize that you experience grace every single day. Look for it. I promise it’s there. You just have to find it. And, once you do, the overwhelming miracle of Christmas, of the born Christ, full of grace and truth, will be that much more magical.
Scripture Reference: And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
John 1:14 KJV
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
James 1:17 KJV
Have you ever felt like there’s no one praying for you? That no one really cares what your going through? Well I care deeply what your going through beloved, and I am here to pray with you, and I hope you will pray God’s goodness and mercy for me too. I can accept your prayer request right here on the blog and I will join in prayer with you!
Matthew 18:20 For Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them”. (ESV)
Let’s make a habit of praying for others rather than judging each other.
Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
Colossians 3:13 KJV
Christmas is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year; everything and everyone is decked out! There are parties to attend, joyful music on the radio, food and gifts galore. Unfortunately, there is another side to the holidays.
For many of us, Christmas can be a time of deep loneliness and stress and fear. Maybe you’ve lost someone, are going through a divorce, or are worried about how you’re going to keep the lights on, let alone put presents under the tree. The pressure to keep up with society’s version of the holidays can be overwhelming, triggering anxiety and depression.
However, these feelings are not unique to our current culture. Worry and fear have been lurking in the shadows since the very first Christmas. The characters in the Christmas story had everything to be afraid of. Joseph, Mary, the shepherds, and the wise men lived in a scary world filled with uncertainty. God knew this and sent his messenger, the angel Gabriel, to deliver the news of a Savior. Each time Gabriel brought the message, he started with, “Do not be afraid.”
What can we take away from this? First, I’m certain angels are terrifying! Second, even in the most frightening of circumstances, God has a plan. Herein lies the magic of Christmas. Jesus, born in a manger, in the middle of the desert, under the rule of a tyrant, was the hope of all humankind. This is what we celebrate. No matter what is going on in our lives or in the world around us, Jesus is our hope.
Scripture Refrence: And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
Luke 1:30 KJV
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
Luke 2:10 KJV
In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
John 7:37 KJV
Merry Christmas Season to all! Hope everyone connects with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as we celebrate his birth.