Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Jesus is the Christmas Message by Rose McCormick Brandon

With the all the references to Jesus’ arrival as the Babe in the manger, have you taken time to contemplate why the Savior came?
From his jail cell, the apostle Paul carefully crafted a life-changing message to the Philippians. He didn’t preach a religion, a lifestyle or a Christian worldview. Paul’s message was simple. He preached Jesus. He said that everyone who believed in Him would have an intimate relationship with Him — a friendship so tight that His life would consume theirs.
When a human being meets the living Christ, a deep bond develops between the two. This divine friendship awakens new appetites, new desires — a thirst for spiritual understanding, for holy living, and all things pleasing to the Father. We find ourselves loving God instead of fearing or ignoring Him. No wonder we use the expression “born again” to describe this experience.
Christ not only awakens new and wholesome desires in us, He gives us power to act on them. His power releases us to live in a manner that delights the heart of God. Paul encouraged believers not to try to walk in Christ’s footsteps but to allow Him to walk in theirs. What a dynamic difference! Why should we plod along in our weaknesses when Christ offers us His strength? His strength pours into the crevices of our souls and reaches places that no sermon, letter or lecture can touch.
Paul bid farewell to the men and women, boys and girls from every strata of society in Philippi knowing they had one thing in common: Jesus living in their hearts.
When we introduce others to Jesus we can confidently trust Him to do His work in their lives. We are still called to mentor, nurture and teach, but Christ is the most important person in their lives, not us.
“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now; Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:3-6, KJV).
Paul preached Jesus. He's a life-changing message. Let’s make sure the content of our message matches his.
A prayer for today: “Lord, this Christmas I'm thankful for this born-again experience. I treasure my friendship with You. Help me to share your message with others — not a lifestyle or a list of rules, but only Jesus.”
Rose McCormick Brandon’s most recent book is He Loves Me Not . . . He Loves Me. Her articles and essays are published in magazines, books, newspapers and devotionals in Canada and the U.S. She is an award-winning writer who specializes in personal experience, faith, life stories and the British Home Child Immigration period of Canadian history. Rose is married to Doug and lives in Caledonia, Ontario. She has three adult children and two grandchildren. Visit her blogs: The Promise of Home and Listening to My Hair Grow. Contact her at: 


Peter Black said...

Thank you Rose, for this warm -- and beautifully clear -- presentation of the Gospel / Good News of our Lord, of His mission and how it's power still works in us today.~~+~~

Peter Black said...

Oops!... Can't take out that mistaken apostrophe, in the last line of my comment above. Sorry.:(

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