As a child I enjoyed Christmas as much as any child does, I liked getting presents like most people do. But I remember as I got older I still liked the presents I just didn't really care about the whole Christmas festivities. My family always made Christmas eve a drawn out night, we would eat, then read the bible, then sit around and sing Christmas songs for seemed like eternity. After all the program finally finished we would pass out presents. As I got later in my teenage years I really disliked all the traditions of my family, I put up with it cause I had too, but it seemed to drag out forever. My concern at 17 & 18 years old was that I wanted to open presents and then go to the parties were my friends were, where everyone else was drinking and having a good time.
At that point in my life I didn't realize what a treasure I had for a family, I didn't realize that my parents had extreme love for me because they cared more about sharing Christ with me than they cared about me going to have a supposedly good time with my friends.
Well August 25th 1997 I gave my life to Jesus Christ, it was an exciting thing for me. In August 1997 my whole world turned upside down for the good, I wasn't a good example of a Christian or on behalf of Jesus for a while. Consistently as time went own, the Holy Spirit kept showing me things that I needed to let go of, if I was going to truly live for Jesus and be a reflection of Him. Many things changed very quickly and some gradually, and honestly the Holy Spirit is still changing me to be more like Jesus. But of all the details of my life that changed, one thing that happened was radical and instant, I all of a sudden began desiring the Christian atmostphere that I had ran from. I no longer found entertainment and appeasement in the worldly life of drinking and just being dumb as I had before. And from that moment till today, there is this amazement I have of how Jesus has loved me through so many dumb choices of my life.
I stand amazed that at my worst and at my best, Jesus loved me, and had given His life for me to show that love. So with all that in mind, Christmas 1997 marked a new love for Christmas that I had never had. Christmas 1997 I was anxious alright, I was anxious to hear the story of my Savior's birth, and sing the songs of His wonderful gift of Salvation to all who will call on Him. The presents were going to be appreciated that night, but for all I cared the presents could wait because the joy was in the ultimate Giver of Life and not just the gifts. Each year I stand more amazed at the story of the Savior's birth and His willingness to come to the earth to rescue people.
Whether Christmas stirs memories of sadness or joy I leave you with a reminder of what Jesus has done to reach out to you.
1 Peter 1:18-20
18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver. 19 It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. 20 God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but he has now revealed him to you in these last days.
Editors note: Due to the fact that I have to rush off, this blog hasn't been edited yet, so please overlook the misspellings and grammatical errors that appear for now.