Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2: 6, 7 (NKJV)
And then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid…For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”
Luke 2: 10-12 (NKJV)
I can say a lot of things about God as I sit here this morning four days from Christmas—but the one thing that stands out among them all is this:
He never gave up on me.
Looking back I can see that I gave up on me—many times. Others through the early years gave up on me also—and shut me out. But He never did. Despite the fact that I made absolutely no room in my life for Him—He kept tapping on my life. If the truth be told, I knew that if He was like any of the other adult-like people in my life, I was sure I couldn’t trust Him either.
No room in my life for Him—and He kept coming anyway.
Funny, but that’s the way it’s been throughout the centuries with God and the rest of us—we turn from Him, choose different directions for our lives, love everything else in the world but Him—and He still never gives up on us. We make no room for Him in the days of our lives, we turn from His outstretched arms, and we seek and set up idols of comfort, wealth and success to try unsuccessfully to shed light on the darkness of our lives.
And He keeps coming. He keeps tapping on our lives.
Maybe that’s why I’m moved to tears every time I read that verse above and the rest of the Christmas story in Luke chapter two. God came for me—and you—in the form of a baby over two-thousand years ago. God’s ultimate gift of love, grace and hope for our lives. God’s spotlight into the darkness of our lives and the world around us. God’s spotlight into the dark, dirty, damp, and dung-filled mangers of our lives.
That’s what’s happening again to the world as we approach yet another Christmas day. “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”
Maybe that’s what He knew I still needed when He sent our elder Granddaughter Hannah to us ten years ago, and then Ellie Kate five years ago. A reminder—through their lives—when I had a hard time seeing the Baby in the manger. A reminder of His never-ending love and grace. Another tap on the shoulder to remind me He was still there. An eternal Light in a world where darkness still exists. Hope in a world where despair still overcomes the lives of too many. He probably saw that the things of my life had left little room for Him.
I wish you could see our video recording of Ellie Kate singing the song she recently composed to honor God. But believe me when I tell you, that even though I don’t understand the significance of every word which makes up her composition, she sings the song with passion and a deep belief in what she is singing. The words are simple—the message clear:
My true Love.
Still wish. Sweet talk.
Jesus loves me.
Jesus hugs me.
Jesus is my Savior
(Imagine the word “Savior” sung on a long drawn out note—“Sav-ooooooor”).
He just keeps on coming—in so many ways and through so many people—to remind us that He’s still here, that He still loves us, and that He still has a plan for our today, our tomorrow and all the rest of our lives.
I don’t know what’s going on in your life right now. I don’t know the pain of the past you carry with you into this season of Light. I don’t know what the future holds for you. I don’t know what is keeping you from making room for Him in your life.
But I’ll let you in on a secret: throughout it all He’s still there. Throughout it all, He’s still coming. He’s still tapping on your life and mine to not only let Him in but to let Him be the priority He needs to be so that we can become all He intended for us to be.
I can say a lot of things about God—although not nearly as eloquently as Ellie Kate sings—and it’s all good. But the one thing that stands out about Him is this:
He never gave up on me…and never will.
That’s the message of the Babe of Bethlehem.
That’s the message of Christmas.
God loved us so much—He sent His Son—to demonstrate that He was still there. That He was still tapping on our lives. That He would never give up on you and on me.
With that, how can we not have a Merry Christmas!
In His Name—Scott