For this reason, he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Hebrews 2:17, NIV
This Christmas may end up being one of my all-time favorites. It’s been difficult to get here, but I’m beginning to see the Light of my Savior and recognize it really is He who is standing at the finish line. He is the PRIZE! Jesus, He is my Treasure!!
I wish it weren’t so, but for me at least it seems hardship causes me to pause and look deeper for truth. The difficulty of a season creates in me a need to look back and see where I’ve been. It’s a recalibrating. Throughout this year, and the last three or maybe I should include the last ten, the temptation to quit has been strong.
So many times I’ve thrown my hands in the air while scrying*, “I can’t do this! I’m done… it’s all too hard!” My husband, parents, and sons can all testify to this truth. They’ve all watched me come completely unglued over the last ten years. And it’s been the best thing that could have ever happened to me.
Truly, this is the best place for each of us to find ourselves. It’s a breaking, which needs to take place in each of us individually and in the Church corporately. We want to appear on the outside like we have it all together. We’re rock hard solid. We’re tough. Pretty, but tough. And we’re not going to let anyone hurt us. We won’t even let anyone get close enough to attempt to hurt us. It’s a perfect plan!
It’s a lie.
The enemy has sold us all a lie and we’ve bought into it – individually and corporately. It’s a huge scheme of the enemy to keep us isolated. We’re deceived into thinking we’re doing a good thing for our families by protecting ourselves behind sturdy walls. But then, we’re frustrated when we feel ineffective. We all come to a place in our faith walk (or at least we should) where we look around and wonder how we got here. We’ve been circling the same old territory without realizing we’re not getting anywhere.
This has been the all too effective strategy of the enemy. The deception of protection has lulled too many of us into thinking we’re being good for God. However, it is a deception, and it is not obedience to God.
We need a shaking. We need an awakening. We need to look up and recognize the rut we’ve dug ourselves into. We need to be asking the question, “Where’s the abundant life?”
Hard ground is famine ground. A harvest will only come when the hard ground is broken open, fertilized with the stinky stuff of life, seed sown and watered.
Hard rock is a dam. The refreshment of cool, clear springs will only come when the rock is broken open.
The blessing of this Christmas is wrapped in the ordinary brown paper and string of lean times. The glory of the true Christmas story found in the gospels of Luke and Matthew shake me out of pretense. Having to journey through the real difficult stuff of life to arrive at the manger causes me to reflect on foundational truths learned long ago.
Abundant life is found in an obedient life. Living obediently to God means going out. He said, “Go!” And Jesus came to show us the way. He’s always been here. Jesus has never left me. He is the Pioneer. He’s been calling me out of the wilderness – the dry barren land He previously and purposefully escorted me into. Do you see Him with your heart? Can you hear Him calling your name?
Will you allow Jesus to unwrap your heart this Christmas? Will you stay still long enough to allow Him to break you free of the trappings and the lies of the enemy?
I pray for you and for me this is the best Christmas ever because it’s the Christmas our eyes are opened to the very best gift of all. Jesus, He is our Prize. Jesus is our Treasure! Jesus, Living Water and Bread of Life. Jesus, Lord of the Harvest. Savior and soon coming, King!
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. Revelation 3:20 NIV
*combination of screaming and crying