Some of you have already opened many of your Christmas gifts. But I want you to imagine unwrapping some special gifts today. The Christmas gifts of hope, love, joy, and peace as we celebrate the gift of Jesus Himself.
The Gift of Hope.
We often think of hope in the future, God’s gift of hope includes hope past, present and future. What is the longest you’ve waited for something? The people of Israel knew about waiting. Their entire history was marked by waiting. For thousands of years they waited for a Savior. Finally, Jesus’ birth was foretold to Mary that she would have a Son. How would you have handled this unexpected news? Thankfully, Mary responded in faith and held fast to the hope of the promise of Jesus, God with us. You can have hope in every circumstance because of Jesus.
The Gift of Love.
Did you know that Christmas is the most popular time of the year to get engaged? It’s true – even more than Valentine’s Day. Christmas is the season of love. Love is a great Christmas gift from God to accept, experience, and share. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” That’s why God gave His Son to pay the ultimate sacrifice for each of us. That’s why we can accept His love and be made right with Him in forgiveness and for an eternal relationship that goes beyond our time on earth.
The Gift of Joy.
Joy is more than a feeling. Even if you don’t feel joy this season, you can have joy. The shepherds were not in a joyous spirit that first Christmas. But as angels appeared to them they were in fear. Then their fear turned into joy when they realized that Christ was born. The Bible tells us that when the wise men followed the star, and came to the house where Jesus was, they were overjoyed. You can have joy as you realize that Jesus has come for you.
The Gift of Peace.
Peace is defined as ‘freedom from disturbance; quiet and tranquility.” But often our lives are the opposite of peace. But the angels pronounced “Peace on Earth.” Because of Jesus we can have peace with God, an inner peace, and peace with others. The gift of peace arrives in the form a a person, Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Jesus is the Hope bringing, Love come down, The JOY giver, The Peace Maker. Jesus is the bringing of eternal life and relationship with God. He is the giver of life to the full. He is the way, the truth, and the life. He is everything. He is the gift who entered our dark world and brought light to us all. If you will receive Him today, just like He is, He will receive you, just like you are. Turn to Him and receive the greatest Christmas gift of all.