Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Crucial Relationship

"Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Luke 2:10-12
Life is all about relationships. And each of us basically has two relational yearnings – one for the superficial relationships with other humans; and the deeper, more significant longing to be in union with God. We inherently know that the relationship initiated by Christ, the crib relationship, is vital to our eternity. What we do with this relationship has towering implications in this life and in the afterlife.

In each of our lives, in our cribs, we have a void. And many of us try to pile our cribs full with power, prestige, and possessions. We convince ourselves that if we can just acquire enough stuff in our lives that our crib will be filled and our life will be complete.

But what we don’t see is that until we fulfill our need for a relationship with God, all of the other “stuff” is just that – stuff. The only time that we feel complete and the only time we will see greatness in our lives is when we allow Jesus Christ to rest in our crib. It is a crucial relationship – no other thing in our lives will work until we settle this one.
Jesus saved us from the power and the penalty of our sin. He saved us from living a meaningless life. As you enter into the Christmas season, ask Jesus to step from his crib into yours. Allow him to occupy your life, let him fill every square inch and save you from experiencing that needless void in your crib.

Take time this week to reflect. I found this video (it isn't really a video as much as it is a conversation where a boy called into the radio station. Take time to listen and reflect on what is said.

I hope to see you Sunday. Remember our Christmas Eve service is from 5pm to 6pm. Who can you bring with you who needs to experience the Christmas Story?

Love you all


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Travel Agent

"After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him."
Matthew 2:1-2

When we book a vacation through a travel agent, we usually only see the end results – the tickets and itinerary. We don’t concern ourselves with the behind the scenes stuff; the telephone calls to resorts or the deals made with airlines and hotels. Too often, the same thing happens when we look at the Christmas story. We forget the work that God has done to bring us to Christ’s crib and we only focus on our ticket and itinerary.

Thousands of years before Christ was brought to the earth and placed in a crib, God had done some amazing behind the scenes work to bring the wise men, and ultimately us, to the crib. Because of this work, God broke through to them and revealed himself in a way that they could understand. They listened to God’s word and then followed their travel agent, the Christmas star, to their Savior.

Just like the wise men thousands of years ago, you are on a journey. You are all traveling somewhere in life. And in your journey God has placed an earthbound star to lead you where you need to go. The question is, "Are you following the star that God has given you?" It could be a teacher, a parent or a friend God has placed in your life to lead you to Christ. Make sure you do what the wise men did all those years ago. Seek for answers; ask questions; investigate your findings; then follow that star to the crib of Jesus Christ.

See you this Sunday for Part 2 in our Christmas Series: "Cribs: The Crucial Relationship Initiated By the Savior."

In His Grip,


Tuesday, December 4, 2007

New Message Series for Christmas

"This is real love. It is not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins."
1 John 4:10

We grow up believing that life is all about “me.” We want to call the shots; we want things done our way; we want the power and control. And our selfish thinking causes us to misuse, mislead, and mistreat people—often in ways that can be more harmful than we realize.

The problem results from focusing on ourselves and refusing to loosen our white-knuckle grip on the reins of life. We are afraid of giving control to anyone else, particularly a baby in a crib. But from his crib, that is exactly what Christ tells us we need to do. He tells us, “Give up your crown. Loosen your grip on the reins and let me call the shots.”

He tells us that life is not all about “me,” it is about giving him control and focusing our efforts on others. He tells us that through love, not selfishness, we will gain true power and control. And by acknowledging that God gave his son for us out of love, we will begin to realize that life is truly about giving, not getting.

This week, look to the crib of Christ and follow the example of love that it represents. Take the lead by loosening your grip of control. Surrender the reins of your life to the true King and transform your selfish nature by allowing the attitude of unselfishness and love to flow from Christ’s crib to yours.

See you this Sunday as we start our Christmas Series: "Cribs: The Crucial Relationship Initiated By the Savior."

In His Grip,