We pray you and your family have had a wonderful Christmas season. The cool thing about this time of the year are the stories we get to tell. Stories of families surrounding a tree or around a table enjoying the blessings given to us by God. Maybe your story is not that great. Maybe this Christmas has been lonely or hard. Either way we gather at this time of the year developing our own stories remembering the one story that matters this season: the birth of Jesus Christ.
Take some time and watch these videos as some of our people share their own stories:
Isaiah 9:2a reads, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.” The great light we remember coming to us this season is Jesus Christ born of the virgin Mary in the town of Bethlehem, the first advent. Advent comes from the Latin word meaning “coming” or “arrival.” This season is marked by remembering the first advent of Christ in a manger as we anticipate the second advent of Christ on a white horse. Revelation 19 tells us the story of Jesus coming back to redeem his creation once and for all.
In the meantime he has given us a story. Your story can be one of pain or hopelessness or it can be one of joy and hope found in Jesus Christ. As you heard in the stories above that covered all ranges of life experiences including marriage, birth, death, and new life in Christ, Jesus can take any type of experience and use it for his glory.
John 3:16 tells us, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” Jesus was born so that we could find the hope we could never find on our own. So in this new year, let me challenge you to go all out for Jesus. Trust in him.
Have you accepted him as Lord and Savior of your life? If not there is one thing you must do. Call on him. Admit that you are a sinner and have been trying to live life your own way. Ask him to change you. Tell him you would rather do it his way than your own. Romans 10:13 reads, “For ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'”
Your story this new year can be one of faith. Your story this new year can be one of hope. Your story this new year can be one of love. One that reflects the love only found in Jesus Christ. A Savior born to light up the darkness that surrounds us. A Savior who gives us a story of light to push back the darkness in a world in need of restoration.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” -Matthew 5:16
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- written by: Dean Ross, Pastor of Vision & Teaching for Restoration Church and Executive Director & Founder of The Restoration Collective
- scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (ESV), copyright 2001 by Crossway. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- Reposted from http://www.restorationgathering.com; post adapted for the collective blog