“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
Christmas. A time when the world decides almost unanimously to breathe a collective sigh of relief that another year has nearly come to pass. We remember the good times and bad, reminisce on the olden days of Christmases past, and look forward to what the new year will bring. And in the hearts of believers, it’s a time of celebration, remembering the great sacrifice that our creator made in shedding his glory to come and live our life, to die, rise, and return again soon.
Jesus is a person. It’s an important thing to remember, because all too many times, we find ourselves treating him like a formula, a cosmic vending machine, or as some kind of algorithm where if we say the right words, do the right things, then good things should happen to us. Many times when they don’t, we wonder about whether or not our cries our heard, and why things didn’t go our way. It’s important to remember that although we have been given much in the way of higher thinking, wisdom, and logic; the ways and thoughts of Jesus are so much higher and complex than we can possibly imagine. This is why we put our trust in him, even when sometimes it doesn’t make sense.
Jesus was God, but he was also human. He laughed, he cried, he shared moments of joy, and moments of sorrow. Upon finding out about the death of Lazarus, and seeing the visiting Jews and Mary cry, the shortest verse in the bible tells us that Jesus wept. He was moved emotionally, and expressed it in much the same way we do. Jesus went to gatherings, weddings, talked shop with other religious leaders, and shared meals with his friends in much the same fashion we do today. Jesus experienced pain and fear as he reasoned with God about possible options in regards to his coming death, but saw that there was no other way to reconcile man to God. Jesus experienced every ounce of pain as he suffered and died for our sins, and then rose in glorious victory over death.
This Christmas day, as you open your presents, attend services, and spend time with family; remember that the reason for all that we do is because Jesus first loved us. It was this endless love and mercy that fueled Jesus, and kept him going through all the pains and troubles of this life. He saw every life, including yours, and decided that you were worth it. And you still are.