Some people's lives are so noteworthy they become inspirational. The Bible is filled with accounts of such people, including two in the book of Philippians.
The Nazis stripped Victor Frankl’s life down to almost nothing. Once a renowned psychiatrist, Frankl was reduced to being a slave labourer at the notorious death camp Auschwitz. He could have seethed with hate and self-pity but, instead, Frankl realized that the Nazis could never steal, shape, or dictate his attitude.
Some joy experienced at Christmas is seasonal. Is our joy only related to Christmas because of all the pleasant things associated with it? Or is it “all-weather” joy like the tires, good to run on all year through all seasons?
Buckle up and keep your hands inside the vehicle at all times, because you’re about to go on the wildest ride of your life. This ride will involve time travel, taking you all the way past human history, the creation of Adam and Eve, and the beginning of the universe. This ride—this journey—will transport you to eternity past, to a time before time began. Are you ready? It’ll require you to use your imagination and think, but it’s a trip worth making.
When all is said and done, you’ll say, “Honestly, I didn’t figure this thing out. It must have been God.” Talk about mysterious! The longer I live the Christian life, the less I know about why He leads as He does. But I am absolutely confident that He leads.
When a baby comes into our lives as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, or sisters, we rejoice in the magnificence of God’s gift of life. But how much more did the family rejoice in wonderment when the child was Emmanuel, God with us? When God took on human flesh at the birth of Jesus, He brought a wonder to the world that had yet to be seen.
Keep this familiar story from losing its wonder by pondering the incredulity of the God of the universe arriving on earth as a newborn infant. Oh, what a glorious night!
Probing Deeper into the Incarnation will remind you that before Mary placed baby Jesus in the manger, He existed in heaven with God the Father and God the Spirit. The Son of God became a man and gave up His own life out of His love for you—and to make it possible for you to love Him in return.
Just “act medium.” Believable. Honest, human, thoughtful, and down to earth. Regardless of your elevated position or high pile of honours or row of degrees or endless list of achievements, just stay real. Who did you do it for anyway?
We never seem to tire of the Christmas story. It’s always fresh, always inspiring, and always life-changing.