THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR?

Is this really the most wonderful time of the year?  We hear that sung, we hear it spoken, but is that really true?  Why is Christmas the most wonderful time of the year?   

Maybe for you, this time of the year just exposes to an even greater degree your weariness.  And it’s deeper than just physical weariness; there’s an emotional weariness, and spiritual weariness.  Even though we are good at putting on Instagram faces, inside we need something that is more than this world can give. And perhaps it’s not just the weariness of your life, but the messiness too. There’s just stuff you’re going through and dealing with that is overwhelming and weighing you down.  

But our hope is this, that what we celebrate, and who we celebrate at Christmas is for a people who are weary and messy. This gospel message of Christmas, Jesus’s arrival into this dark and weary world, is hope for broken sinful lives in a broken sinful world. 

In the Bible, the prophet Isaiah tells us that some 700 years prior to Jesus’s birth the people were walking in darkness and distress; there was an anguish of the sou, and a sense of gloom emotionally and spiritually.  In other words, there was much weariness and messiness.  And they needed hope. They needed a Savior. 

And this prophet, Isaiah, tells them that there would be One who would come, who would be their salvation: 

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 

Talk about an amazing gift from God! He would be all of these and so much more.  Jesus is the all-sufficient Savior who has come to us. 

He is the Wonderful Counselor. 

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you.” Psalm 32:8 

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding. In all your ways seek to know Him and He will direct your steps.” Proverbs 3:5-6 

There isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t need His counsel.  I’ve found that when I try to figure things out on my own it doesn’t go or end well.  But God gives wisdom in how to walk through, and navigate this life we live. 

Recently I’ve started watching the show Running Wild with Bear Grylls.  That’s the kind of life adventures I’ve become drawn to, and are bucket-list worthy to me.  The caveat to that is I have to have someone who really knows what they are doing in order for me to make it and survive.  I can’t do that on my own because I don’t have the knowledge or skill level to do so.  I know my limits.  But, Bear, if you’re reading this (and it’s a long shot, I know), I’m game.  

In this life, we don’t have to go it alone or try to figure out this life on our own. God will instruct us in the way we should go; how we should live. He knows the way because He has ordained every step.  If you want to have less stress and more joy, let Him counsel you and follow what He says. 

He is Mighty God. 

“Behold I am the LORD, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?” Jeremiah 32:27 

There is nothing too big or difficult for Him. Rather than wearing yourself out and trying to do everything on your own, trust God with your life; not just the hard things, but all things.  There isn’t anything that you are going through right now that would make God say, “I think I’ll pass on that one.”  When you find yourself wondering if God really is big enough to handle all your stuff (your addictions, depression, anxiety, relationship problems, financial issues, etc.,) just remember that no one else has (or ever will) spoken anything into existence, upheld the universe and galaxies by the word of His power, parted seas, raised the dead to life, given eternal life, and I could go on and on.  There is no limit to His power.  He is mighty God.  

He is Everlasting Father. 

He never grows weary in caring for our weariness. Jesus has exemplified father-like characteristics toward us; He reveals God the Father’s character to us; one who is always there and never leaves; one who fathers us in every moment and every area of our life.  Perhaps this is a tender spot for you because you had no relationship with your earthly father, or it may be there, but very difficult.  We often will view God through the lens of our earthly father, but God is perfect.  Our earthly fathers are not.  They may be loving, but not perfectly loving.  They may be caring, but not perfectly caring.  They may be present, but not perfectly present.  God, the Father, is.  

Charles Spurgeon once said, “There is no unfathering Christ, and there is no unchilding us. He is everlastingly a father to those who trust in him.”  So true.

Let God father you well, and take time to sit in His lap and allow Him to speak to you and remind you of who you are to Him.  

He is Prince of Peace. 

In the chaos of your own personal life, and in this broken world in which we live, there is a peace beyond our comprehension, but never outside the person of Jesus.  It is only through Jesus that we can find true and perfect peace that is lasting. He came so that He might reconcile what was broken because of sin. 

“And He shall be their peace.”  Micah 5:5

I don’t need just a momentary respite from the difficulties and hurriedness of life, I need something more; something deeper.  And because that is a human longing, you need that as well.  

So, Christmas is about Jesus coming to us in the midst of our weariness and messiness and giving us all of who He is to meet all that we truly need. 

And that’s why this is the most wonderful time of the year.

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