★ Day 24 – Reason for the Season – Best Christmas Gift Ever! ★

#Daily Dependence - Reason for the Season - 25 Days of Thankfulness 1Well, we made it!  We have arrived…Merry Christmas!!  I received this from Mardels which I though was very clever..Today the last candle is lit on the Advent Wreath that represents Jesus, which is the only white candle representing Christ Himself…The Candle is in the center of the wreath as Christ should be the center of our life!24 - Daily Dependence - Advent Wreath 5

Galatians 4:4-5 (HCSB) says,

“When the time came to completion, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”

24 - Daily Dependence - Galatians 4-4-5 - The Nativity SceneWhat great news!!  I am so thankful that because of the events 2,000 years ago, I can now be called a son!  What an astounding thought that Jesus, being fully God and fully man would come to earth to be born in a stable and then die on a Roman cross all for me…and for you too!!  (See Hebrews 2:5-18)  I heard a great message from Dr. David Jeremiah called What Christmas Meant to Christ”.  He talked about how The Christmas story has been told from every conceivable point of view…in fact that is exactly what we have done for these past 25 days from the Angel Gabriel, to Mary to the Shepherds to the Wise Men.  In the sermon Dr. David Jeremiah wanted to look at Christmas from a perspective that’s often overlooked…through the eyes of Jesus Himself…fascinating idea isn’t?  He said,

“Status was never important to Jesus but selflessness was…Christ surrendered everything He loved in order that He might serve those He loved.”

What did Christmas mean to Christ?  It meant giving up heaven, giving up the beauty of His home and selflessly coming to Earth.”

Incredible to think of it that way.  Jesus willingly decided to leave paradise…He knew how hard life was going to be and how horrible His death would be and yet Jesus still went through with it!  Wow!  Ralph W. Sockman made this insightful statement…

“The hinge of history is on the door of a Bethlehem stable.”

Everything changed that night in the stable!  I was listening to a great podcast yesterday on my way home from Steven Furtick called “Don’t Make A Scene” in which he said that we have to embrace the CHAOS and the CONTEXT of Christmas; and related it to what it must have been like in the stable that first Christmas.  As we discussed in ★ Day 13 – Reason for the Season – The Nativity Revealed ★ post, the idyllic nativity scene we always see depicted was anything but that! 24 - Daily Dependence - The Birth of JesusSteven Furtick makes a similar point that it must have actually been “chaotic” and anything but a “silent night” amidst all the animals.  The point that hit home for me was that we must…

“Remember the context of Christmas that Christ came into the world through sinners, for sinners and you’re one of them!”

What an unbelievable gift!  If I may take a moment I have a comic to share about another viewpoint that you do not typically think of…24 - Daily Dependence - Comic – What Do You But the Who Made EverythingIt is a great question which got me thinking about gifts that I have received I that past.  The day after Thanksgiving we pulled out all the Christmas decorations, as this has always been the officially start of the Christmas season for my family.  Box after box I saw written on the bottom “Love Mom” and as I shared in the ★ Day 03 – Reason for the Season – Let Hope Arise ★ post, my love for Christmas stems from my Mom.  From the time I was 5 years old, she was a divorcee, raising 3 children at a time when there was such a stigma.  She taught us how to be generous, loving and self-sacrificial.  I have so many wonderful memories of Christmas which was done on a single parent’s income!  Thinking back on it now, as a father myself it is amazing how she were able to rub 2 nickels together to create a quarter.

As you are undoubtedly aware, the new Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens movie is out, which is probably the best of all the movies!  Well long before this newest Hollywood offering, I had the Rebel Transport Ship from “Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strike Back” movie on my Christmas List which I desperately wanted.  My mom rode on the back of a motorcycle through 3 states looking for it just so I wouldn’t be disappointed on Christmas morning.  35 years later I still have it because it was the best gift ever!  24 - Daily Dependence - Star Wars Rebel Transport ShipMy mom always made my wishes come true and put in some much love, time and effort to make Christmas a wonderful time!!  My childhood was spent watching the original Star Wars Trilogy and playing with the toys.  I have two daughters now and have shared my love of Star Wars with them.  My youngest, spent hours playing with the action figures herself which brought such joy to me.  When she was 10 years old, she made this great pun from the catch phrase “May the Force Be With You” (which for those who are not familiar with the franchise, that is the central theme from Star Wars)…

“And may your God be with you!” 

I pray that for everyone who reads these blogs…that you would look to God the Father and accept the sacrifice of His Son Jesus for the forgiveness of the sin that came into the world when Adam rebelled against God.  Romans 5:18-21 (NLT) says,

“Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone.  Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners.  But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous.  God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were.  But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant.  So just as sin ruled over all people and brought them to death, now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

My mom’s sacrificial love for me and desire to give me a Christmas to remember was my first example of what sacrificial love was.  As I was writing this ”Reason for the Season,” my wife and oldest daughter had the same revelation from God that just like my mom rode through 3 states, Jesus was in the grave for 3 days so that we could be saved from our sin.  Though we go through trials in this world, Jesus knows and can empathize with everything we go through.  Perry Noble from NewSpring Church. Said,

“Jesus was in the tomb for three days, even Jesus didn’t walk out of the storm immediately.  If Jesus didn’t immediately walk out of His storm, why would we think we could immediately walk out of our’s…His strength is greater than our storm!”

The greatest Christmas gift I ever received was not a plastic toy from my favorite movie, but Jesus Christ!  I pray that if you don’t know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, that you would make that decision today!  If you would like to learn more, check out ★ Thought for the Day – I Hate Religion and I’m a Christian… ★.  Neal A. Maxwell once said,

“Each of us is an innkeeper who decides if there is room for Jesus!” 

I love that!  The offer is always extended to us but we have to decide whether we will make room for Him.  Speaking of offers…Are you sick of receiving all the email advertisements like these in your inbox?

I know I am.  But I have a deal for you!  And you don’t need to peel anything back!

24 - Daily Dependence - Countdown to Christmas - Salvation is a Free GiftThe Salvation God provided through His Son has no expiration.

The Offer NEVER Ends!!  Get your life on the right path for FREE when you accept Jesus Christ as your   savior. 

Fine Print: If you are ready to accept Jesus, here is a simple prayer to pray…

Lord I am a sinner.  I have tried to run my life and failed, I cannot do it on my own.  I need a savior.  Please wash me, cleanse me, and create in me a new heart.  I am sorry for my sins and I believe that Jesus died as the payment for those sins.  Take my life, I give it to you.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen!

If you prayed that in earnest, I have great news!  You are now a son or daughter of God!  2 Corinthians 5:17-19 (NLT) says…

“This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person.  The old life is gone; a new life has begun!  And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ.  And God has given us this task of reconciling people to Him.  For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them.  And He gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.”

Amen!!  I will close with this quote from William Arthur Ward,

 “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”

Today if you are grateful to God to for sending His Son, tell Him!  Let God hear your gratitude because today is truly a day to celebrate!
24 - Daily Dependence - Merry CHRISTmas Love Jeus

If you would like to see the next installment of our “25 Days of Thankfulness” series go here…★ Day 25 – Reason for the Season – Christmas Isn’t the Destination ★

Or you can start from the beginning by ★ Clicking Here ★

#Daily Dependence - Reason for the Season - 25 Days of Thankfulness

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