“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
It was our first Christmas together! On Christmas Eve, we put our presents to each other under the tree and went to bed. On Christmas morning, Jama wanted me to open mine first. She had given me several wonderful items, especially a lounging jacket with satin lapels. After I received my lavish gifts, she opened her one present, a very practical, but unromantic, vacuum cleaner.
On that first Christmas Day so long ago, God gave the most lavish gift of all. He didn’t have to. The fellowship among the Trinity was sufficient. But His creation of man was a disappointment because disobedience and sin had entered the world. Then God had a plan. He always has a plan! In the fullness of time, He sent His only Son, born of a virgin in Bethlehem, raised in a poor carpenter’s home in a little town called Nazareth. And the Son came willingly, knowing there was pain and sorrow in His coming. A heavenly choir announced His coming, but few noticed. There was a star to help those who wanted to find Him. Few did. Some wise men, a few shepherds; that was about it.
But God, because His essence is love and His mercy and grace are lavish beyond our comprehension, sent the Christ Child anyway! And for the people of His day and for our day, we have access to His love, mercy, and grace. During this Christmas season give God lavish praise for sending His Son on that Christmas morning. It is the least we can do!
Bob Martin is a retired public school administrator and local pastor. He and his wife Jama live in Wilmore’s Bethel Pointe. He’ll be happy to tell you about his two children and five grandchildren.