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December 18, 2017

Tis the Season

How is Christmas shaping up for you this year? When we think about Christmas, we think about all of the gifts that we have to buy, the decorating, taking children to visit Santa, Christmas programs and getting together with family and friends to enjoy time together. Even among believers, people offer the babe in the manger a slight nod as we continue with our busy schedules.

 

In churches, the birth of Jesus is limited to a few carols, and a pageant displaying the story where angels, shepherds, animals, and three wise men all converge on the infant. The story sadly stops there with everyone kneeling to worship the young child.

 

At the same time, every year, this same peaceful manger scene is fought against in courts all over the country. What kind of power could this scene have that it causes some to be drawn to it, and at the same time causes others to be repelled, and yet the majority dismiss so easily?

 

The Angels, shepherds, the wise men knew what others do not understand. They knew that this event demonstrated that God loved them enough to give his best to his creation.

This story did not begin at the manger. We learn in the Bible in the book of Genesis that God created the heavens and the earth. We learn that in six days he created everything that is on the earth. His greatest creation, mankind, was made in God’s own image.

Then mankind turned his back on God and decided to do things his own way. They thought that they could live up to God’s standard without him or that they could somehow win God’s approval through their actions. This misunderstanding of truth continues today.

 

In the Beginning

There are times when we realize that we need God, but for some reason we think that we can fix our own problems or that we have to do something in our own efforts, but that isn’t God’s way. God wants us to need him and his ways. He wants the best for each of us and this is why he chose to give us Jesus who was not only made in his image, but was literally a chip off the old block.

This story did not end at the manger, either. After the angels went back to heaven, the shepherds and animals went back to their fields and the wise men returned to their countries, Jesus lived his life here on earth by giving in the same manner that his father had given him. He gave health to sick and life to the dead. He made the blind to see and deaf to hear. He then gave his own life on the cross so that he could also free us from sin. He never asks us to give up sin first, he became our sin instead. With that his life on earth was finished. All we have to do is believe in his resurrection, and share his gift with those around us.

Let’s Just All Agree to Get Along

During this Christmas season, let’s put aside our differences. Let’s share God’s gift of love with everyone we know, even people we don’t like. For the Love of God and for the rest of the year let’s forget about all of the fighting over religion and politics

Let’s give the gift of Peace on Earth, Good Will to Man! 


God First Loved Us

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When was the last time you considered God’s love for you? In John 3:16 it says, “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. Verse 17 goes on to say, “For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world though him might be saved.”

Another place in the word it says that greater love has no man but to lay down his life for a friend. Another verse says that in Christ we are no longer servants but joint heirs with Jesus.

God Demonstrates His  Love for Us.

God wants us to have his love and he gives it freely. You can’t earn it, you just have to accept it.  In other words, We are sinful creatures. We don’t deserve God’s love, In Romans 3:23, it says that we all have sinned, but God gave his son as our substitute.  There are no big sins and little sins. All sins cost came with the same penalty and all cost the same, They all cost Jesus Christ his life. He has made the first move in giving his son for us. Our turn is next in that we need to accept his offering of love. He gives us love and if we are sincere and humble in receiving that love.

But I Don’t Deserve it, You Don’t Know What I have Done!

None of us deserve God’s love, but he has offered it to us as a gift. He loves all of us that much. In John 17, Jesus said that he prayed that we all would believe so that we all could be one with him and the Father. He doesn’t want you punished! He wants fellowship with you and me and everyone! Romans 6:23 says “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Now that’s love! All sin whether great or small came for the same price. The death of Jesus Christ.

Once We Accept his love, We Are Compelled  to Share It

How do we know when we have this gift of love? We know we have it when we are able to share that grace with other people. When we accept Christ, we receive his love and we realize its value and how much he values everyone around us, we have to share his love with others..

A few years ago a friend gave me an aloe vera plant and now I have ten such plants that I need to transplant and share with others. I could leave those plants in the same pot, but I know that by sharing those plants, I will have even more plants growing in that pot. Love is like those plants. If I don’t share that love, it will not thrive as it should and might even die. It is only through sharing that love will continue to grow. If I share it, it multiplies. When hard times come, the love that I have given to others will come back to me, just as if my aloe vera plant dies, I am certain that one of my friends would have a plant to share with me if I needed it.

We share his love by sharing it with others when we forgive them. We give them forgiveness, not because they deserve to be forgiven. We forgive because he has given us his love. Their forgiveness is not merited, but we give it because he first gave us the gift of his love.

Say You Love God? Have Compassion For Others

 I John 2:4-5 says

He that says he knows him (Christ) and keeps not his commandments is a liar and the truth is not in him. But whoso his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected, hereby we know we that we are in him”

What then is the commandment?

And that this is his commandment-that we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another as he gave us commandment. And he that keeps his commandments dwells in him and he in him. And hereby we know that he abides in us, by teh Spirit which he has given us” I John 3:23 & 24

If we have God’s love in our hearts, we will share it because it is the nature of God’s love in us.

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Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback.

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com

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