By His Grace: Jesus is the reason for the season
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
It had been four years since my siblings and I all have been together. I could not wait to disembark my plane and meet up with my younger brother at baggage claim. Not until then did I relieve the absence of time and my need to be with loved ones. My mother was not told all of her children were coming home for the holidays. It was meant to be a surprise.
As the plane began to make its descent into Newark Airport, I gave the Lord a thank you for safe travels and the absence of snow. I have always been one who enjoyed the fall foliage in its multi colors as it gently fell from the trees. There is something about viewing the four seasons; spring, summer, fall and winter as it unfolds. You come to greatly appreciate what God created.
“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.'"
The weight of this year, unbeknownst to me until recently, apparently had taken its toll. It was revealed the four-day trip back home was not just for my family but very much needed for me as well. My holiday jolly needed some adjustment, and what better way than to share the love of Christ with others.
What brings me joy most of all is when cooking for others. Since I am known to prepare meals like my Southern grandmother Ms. Rebecca, it was secretly decided mom was not to cook for the holiday but instead spend quality time with family and friends.
“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
How many understand there is joy in sharing with others the gift of love?
The greatest gift of all did not come wrapped under a tree. Our perfect gift was born in an unconventional setting and out of love for you and for me.
“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.'"
The great surprise was a hit. My mother was more than overwhelmed with joy. Her children had put a smile upon her heart. Later that day and after we settled in for the night, I had chance to reflect upon what was most important this holiday season and why so.
Jesus is the reason for all seasons in life regardless of pandemics, wars and rumors of wars or political discord. We are to celebrate through prayer, honor and praise the Creator of the universe for his goodness, protection and many other blessings bestowed upon us through that of his Son. Our attitude of gratitude toward the Lord prepares the heart for an even greater celebration to come.
You may ask what celebration that may be? The soon return of Christ as he comes to take us home to be with him for eternity.
And through God’s love to mankind, we too have an opportunity and responsibility to share this priceless gift with others this holiday season. How is this accomplished? Share the Good news; emulate the love Christ in all that you do and toward those who cross your path.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
You may also ask how I can be part of the catching away upon Jesus return.By your own free will, you accept Christ as lord and savior. Do not allow this moment to pass; tomorrow is not promised.
When you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. It is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
Please repeat this prayer: "Lord, Jesus, forgive my sins I committed against you. I believe Jesus died for my sins and has risen again. Please come into my life and heart and lead the way. I confess you as my Lord and Savior from this day forward. In Jesus’ name, amen."
Welcome into the family of Christ.
I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.
May the lord keep you and bless you continuously. Shalom, go in peace.
Bible references Isaiah 9:6 NIV; Luke 2:8-11 NIV; Mark 10: 45 NIV; Luke 2:12-14; John 13:34. To obtain the full benefits of each verse, please read the five verses before and after each verse.
-- Edith Nevis can be reached at 857-2200 or at email@example.com.