During this Christmas week, as I watch the hustle and bustle and enter the crowded shops during this season, I am reminded of the greatest gift of all. Jesus. He is the gift that never wears out, that never gets old, He is in fact the gift that keeps on giving.
Even before His birth, the meaning of giving it all was demonstrated. God could have easily created Jesus with just one word. Instead, He appointed a teenager to get pregnant, to leave her hometown and family, and to be rejected by many.
While pregnant, she left for a long journey on a donkey and delivered Jesus in a barn full of hay and animals. Even in knowing that His son would live to die, rejected all the way to the end. God showed us first with His own son that He requires sacrifice.
In fact, throughout Scripture we read that anytime God wanted to work in life-changing ways for His people, He always required a sacrifice first. There had to be something present that demonstrated sincerity and commitment. Jesus always refines, purges and makes us into a pure vessel before he uses us greatly for his glory and our purpose.
It requires surrender. It requires self-denial. I know this sounds ugly but believe me it’s not. We must become co-dependent on the creator. The quick prayer of salvation isn’t evidence of a follower; it’s saying that you believe in Jesus and secure your salvation.
Ok now, what? The sign of a Jesus follower is a life that is stretched, uncomfortable and sensitive to His voice. Living a life of radical obedience is that proof.
No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” -Luke 9:62
Following Jesus will always cost you your time, your plans, your friends, family and your finances. As someone who has always been independent, I can testify, that the peace, favor, and protection that follows is the great reward.
Jesus always refines, purges and makes us into a pure vessel before he uses us greatly for his glory and our purpose.”
Let’s Pray (warning: life changing)
“Lord, Thank you for your great sacrifice. I know the cost is not easy but I want to surrender as you did with your son Jesus. You deserve it all and I want my life to have purpose and meaning through you. Forgive me for living a selfish life. I surrender my life to you to do whatever you want to do in me. Amen.”