“My goal for today is to de-stress your Christmas. When I talk to some people about Christmas Spirit, they speak of their family. Certainly, I loved being with my children during the Christmas season. We spent a few minutes each day reading a Christmas book as we followed the suggestions of the Advent calendar. But as an empty-nester, I don’t have children to play with during the holidays. I have not lived near my extended family for over 30 years. Last year I spent Christmas with 2 Syrian Refugees who had never been away from their family during any holiday. Together we had a joyous Christmas. So Christmas is not about being with family.
If you define Christmas spirit through social media, then you need lots of decorations. Even though we are stressed with all the extra activities of Christmas, we still manage to theme our trees and place one in every room of our houses. I fear some people believe their Christmas will be meaningless if they don’t have a perfect holiday centerpiece on their table. Although I love seeing the beauty of lights and decorations, some of my meaningful Christmases had very few ornaments. Twice we moved to other parts of the state during Christmas. One year we celebrated Christmas early, so we could paint the inside of our house while we had time off from work on Christmas day.
One gift that I have seldom received at Christmas is good health. As I child, I was plagued by stomach bugs and croupy coughs as my childhood Christmas photos prove. As an adult, I had emergency surgery almost bleeding to death internally in December. I also spent days in bed before and after December 25th when complications from another surgery developed. Surprisingly, health is not required to celebrate Christmas.
Christmas spirit is found in the angels’ words to the shepherds. (Luke 2:8-14)
Jesus Christ came as a baby to bring peace between God and man.
We rejoice that a relationship with God is possible thorough Jesus Christ. Yes family, decorations, and good health are nice, but they are not necessary to celebrate Christmas. We do not have to stress over gifts or trying to keep up with other people’s expectations.
When we see every beautiful ornament, we must think of God’s great gift to us, His Son Jesus!”
The Steps That Lead To Salvation
1. Recognize that you are a sinner. Sin is doing what you want instead of what God wants. It is a simple as being selfish. It is choosing to not be kind. It is making anything or anyone more important than God.
Romans 3:23-25 Everyone has sinned. No one measures up to God’s glory. The free gift of God’s grace makes all of us right with him. Christ Jesus paid the price to set us free. God gave him as a sacrifice to pay for sins. So he forgives the sins of those who have faith.
Romans 6:23 “When you sin, the pay you get is death. But God gives you the gift of eternal life because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done.”
2. Realize that Jesus paid the cost of your sin so you can go to heaven . Because I have sinned and because you have sinned, Jesus the only one who had never sinned paid the penalty for my sin and for your sin. If Jesus had not paid the penalty for my sin I could not go to heaven.
1 John 4:9-10 How did God show his love for us? He sent his one and only Son into the world. He sent him so we could receive life through him… That is how God showed He loved us and sent his Son (Jesus) to give his life to pay for our sins.
3. Decide to make Jesus number one in your life right now. This is a decision that only you can make.
Ephesians 2:8-10 “God’s grace saved you because of your faith in Christ. Your salvation doesn’t come from anything you do. It is God’s gift. It is not based on anything you have done. No one can brag about earning it. God made you. He created you to belong to Christ Jesus. Now we can do good things. Long ago God prepared them for us to do.”
4. Ask for God’s forgiveness. Choose to make God most important in your life.
You do this by simply talking aloud or in your mind to God.
1 John 1:9 “God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, he will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure.”
Acts 3:19a “So turn away from your sins. Turn to God.” Then your sins will be wiped away.
Romans 10:9-10 Say with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord.’ Believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead. Then you will be saved. With your heart you believe and are made right with God. With your mouth you say that Jesus is Lord. And so you are saved.”
5. If you meant that prayer then you are now a Christian.
1 John 5: 12-15 “Those who belong to the Son have life. Those who do not belong to the Son of God do not have life. I am writing these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God. I’m doing it so you will know that you have eternal life. There is one thing we can be sure of when we come to God in prayer. If we ask anything in keeping with what He wants, He hears us. If we know that God hears what we ask for, we know that we have it.”
Have you accepted Christ as your personal Savior?
Please share testimony and/or your questions in the comments. We want to hear from you.
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