Only the Beginning

Saturday, December 24, 2011


Two thousand years ago, on a night lit brightly by a heavenly star, a young mother gave birth to a Holy Child. In a humble manger in Bethlehem Love entered the world in human form. Angels announced it, shepherds welcomed it and wise men celebrated it. The long anticipated arrival of the Savior, whose birth had been foretold centuries before, had finally come. 

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).

But was Christ’s arrival in Bethlehem the final climax to centuries of anticipation? Was the work completed on that starlit night? Though Jesus’ birth was the culmination of a miraculous and holy pregnancy, God’s plan didn’t end as Mary held Jesus in her arms for the first time. That moment was only the beginning.

As Christians, we celebrate Christmas because it is the beginning of God’s plan of salvation for us. Jesus Christ, God and Man, Father and Son, entered the world to save us from our sins. And in the years that followed His momentous birth, God walked with us and talked with us. He brought Light to a dark world as He taught the Truth of the Scriptures. He healed the sick. He comforted the hurting. He fed the hungry and He ministered to the multitudes. He faced every challenge and temptation that we have ever or will ever experience. And through it all, He did not sin. He understands us, not only because He created us, but because He lived as one of us.

Why would our Creator do this? Because He loves us. So great is His compassion that Christ lived a life on earth and then willingly went to the cross to die for us. He saved us from eternal separation from God and gave His life so we could be with Him forever. His ultimate sacrifice, 33 years beyond Bethlehem, is a gift of love and of life that should always be celebrated. 

On this Christmas day, as we remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus, let us also remember that Christmas doesn’t end today.  It is only the beginning of the journey to the cross – a journey willingly taken by our Savior because of His incredible, sacrificial love for us.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

Merry Christmas!  May each of you experience the true joy of Christmas today and each day as you welcome Him into your heart and life.

Celebrating His Love,

Joan



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11 comments

  1. Merry Christmas, Joan. May your day be blessed.

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  2. Being a cheerful giver is sometimes not so easy. God willing and cheerfully gave us His son to die so that we could live. What better gift could He bring?

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  3. Joan, I love how you said "let us also remember that Christmas doesn’t end today. It is only the beginning of the journey to the cross." Such meaningful words of trust and faith! I hope your day (and the days to come) was filled with joyful blessings. :)

    Blessings and hugs,
    Denise

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  4. Thank you, Joan! I cherish this beautiful gift God has given us. I also just wrote on John 3:16! :)

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  5. Amen! Jesus didn't begin in the manger; He is the Word from the beginning Who created all. And His story didn't end in the manger, the cross, or the tomb, but it will never end because He rose again so that all who trust in Him have eternal life. Praise God that He is coming back for all His children!
    God's blessings to you and yours,
    Laurie

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  6. Thank you, Joan for your beautiful words. I wrote about John 3:16 in my post too. It's so amazing when we realize as you said, it's only the beginning. Praise God!

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  7. As Christians, we can choose to live out CHRISTmas everyday.

    A Most Blessed Christmas and A Joyous New Year to you and yours!

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  8. Oh my - we are thinking alike! I've been taking a blogging break and just wrote and posted for the first time in days. Then I come and read your post. Praising Him for the beginning!

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas.

    Blessings,
    Joan

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  9. I just added this feed to my bookmarks. I have to say, I very much enjoy reading your blogs. Thanks!

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