We’ve all heard the saying, “Keep Christ in Christmas.” And so, as you shop black Friday sales, put up the Christmas tree, and pull out the decorations from the attic it can seem like enough just to make sure there is a Christ child or a creche scene among the inflatable lawn decorations of Santa, and reindeer, and Frosty, and elves. Maybe just saying “Merry Christmas” to a few folks who you’re pretty sure are Christian will check the “Keep Christ in Christmas” box for you this year. And yet, Christ had so much more in mind when He established Christmas in the first place. For Christ, Christmas was and is all about you.
Christmas is the realization of a dream, a vision, a prophecy, and a reality that God established once and for all as He laid His head down in the hay of a manger in the little town of Bethlehem, one fact was clear:
Jesus came for you.
When Jesus was born on earth more than 2000 years ago, He was thinking about you. He knew you would need saving, and He wanted to give Himself the ability to reach you in a meaningful and lasting way. That’s why when the angel was explaining the birth of Jesus to His mother Mary’s doubtful, soon-to-be husband, Joseph, he said,
“She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.” – Matthew 1
He will save His people from their sins. Do you believe He is capable of this? Do you realize that you are one of Jesus’ people? Do you know that Jesus is capable of saving you from your sins?
The very heart of faith is to believe that not only is Jesus capable of saving you from your sins, but that He is willing and ready to accomplish this for you right here, right now. No matter what the challenge. No matter what the history. No matter what the reason. Today is a new day because Jesus Christ is God and Savior and the wages of sin — the death, disease, suffering, anguish, anxiety, fear, doubt, destructive behaviors, self-loathing, hatred, anger, violence, dysfunction, and pain — stop today. Right here. Right now.
Jesus is ready to save. It’s why He came. To save you from your sins.
Now, many people believe that evil is so ingrained in who we are as human beings that it’s pointless to resist it or strive for better things. Some believe that people never change. Some fear that if they let go of the mistakes they have made, they may lose their identity, or their battle scars and the honor they feel for their own accomplishments. Others are so confused by the lies they have accepted about themselves, either lies that they told or lies that were told about them, that they are no longer able to see that they have a future. And some are so challenged by the physical presence of the enemy in their body in the form of disease, pain, and suffering that they have lost their way and no longer see the possibility for healing and meaningful salvation.
In the dark. In the quiet. In the obscurity. In the despair and defeat. In the moments of failure when hope is fading — it is in those very moments that Jesus comes to us like a baby — innocent, hopeful, full of joy and expectation, sure of the possibilities, and ready to see what it takes to accomplish His plan for our salvation.
Jesus will not be discouraged. He will not be refused. Jesus looks at you with that peace of confidence, that calm of expectation, and that passionate intensity born of the excitement for what today will bring. He looks at you with love bursting through His outstretched hand and clarity radiating as He picks you up, dusts you off, and says, “You ready for this?”
Jesus isn’t surprised or disappointed. Jesus isn’t confused or overwhelmed. Jesus is ready to help you up. Ready to work with you side by side — guiding, teaching, directing, showing. Stepping in for the hard parts to demonstrate how you can follow His example, and then stepping back to let you try for yourself.
Jesus is not holding back. Jesus is reaching out. Jesus is patient and kind, always constructive, and passionately invested in your success. His purpose is clear. His vision is eternal. And He will not rest until He accomplishes His desire to bless you. Because that is what Christmas is all about. Christmas is all about your salvation.
God doesn’t want us to “Keep Christ in Christmas” for His sake, God is reaching out to share His abundance and His blessings with us through the miracle of Christmas.
God is using His strength to lift us, His wisdom to guide us, His love to support us, His touch to heal us, His wealth to provide for us, the list goes on. God’s Christmas miracle is to use everything that He has and everything that He is, to provide for and bless everyone who will receive Him, accept Him, and welcome Him into their lives. And that is why the message of Christmas is that Jesus came for you. His blessings are ready for you. His salvation is available for you. His birth in the manger was planned for you.
So, as you celebrate the holidays this year, consider what Christ’s purpose may be for you. Think about what blessings may be in store for you. Open your mind to the possibility of salvation from even your most challenging and personal sins. Accept the reality that salvation is possible from even the darkest experiences of other’s sins. Remove the barriers that are holding you back from living the life that God has in store for you, and step out in faith to embrace the abundant blessings of joy, peace, health, fulfillment and prosperity that Jesus has been planning for you since before He was born.
This can be your Christmas to experience the miracle of salvation. You can be saved. No matter your history. No matter your heredity. No matter your situation, Jesus Christ was born for you. Jesus Christ came to earth with one thing in mind, and that was saving you. He is ready. He is able. All He is asking for is the opportunity to show you what He can do for you, how much better your life can be with Him as a key player. Will you take this moment to tell Him that you want a Christmas miracle? Will you speak up right now and tell Him that you want Him to be part of your life? Take the time. Share your heart with your Savior. Open your life to your God. And He will take you places that you’ve never even believed were possible. Give God the chance and He will bless you, restore you, heal you, and provide for you.
Salvation is yours this Christmas. All you have to do is ask.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come” – Luke 4