Merry Christmas From All Things New!
Christmas is almost here, and I did not want to pass up a chance to say thank you for an incredible year for All Things New. Incredible not because of the circumstances in Haiti, but incredible because in the midst of those circumstances, our kids were safe, they ate 3 meals every day, our employees got paid every month, and our ministry continues on. If you want to make a donation to be counted in 2021, please just click the "Donate" button before Jan. 1!
I have been reflecting on Christmas a lot over the past few weeks. With things in Haiti deteriorating, COVID hanging around, and the general uneasiness of America and really the world, it would be really easy to forget about Jesus.
What a strange sentence, and I hope it does not sound sacrilegious or anything, it just seems like it would be easy to do. So I started trying to reflect specifically on Christmas and Jesus' birth for the past few weeks, and one thing really stands out:
The amount of time between the last prophet in Israel and John the Baptist.
For about 400 years, Israel longed for a prophet to speak the Word of GOD to them. They were not waiting for a fortune teller or a king, they were simply waiting for someone to come and reveal the Word of GOD to them in ways that they could not understand it on their own.
The Israelites were also desperate. They needed their Messiah, Jesus to come because they thought He would restore them as a powerful nation on the earth.
They were expecting a show of force, a show of power beyond anything they had ever seen. I imagine, as events begin to play out a little around Bethlehem and Jerusalem, that people could hardly contain their excitement. The time had finally come, it was worth the wait.
Then Jesus is born human, earthly, frail, and with a death sentence already tied to His Name. Not only that, He was not what people were expecting. He was not a show of outward force and strength that would scare the Romans into surrender.
I think it's funny, however, that with hindsight being 20/20, we still see Jesus' birth as "strange." There are Christmas songs that talk about Jesus coming in "Such a Strange way to save the world" or calling His coming a "winter snow instead of a tidal wave." I used to say the same thing. That if I were GOD, I would have done something much more powerful and grandiose.
The truth is, when you really think about it, how much more powerful is it that GOD sent a baby to save the world? It was, and I mean this literally, maybe the most powerful show of force that GOD had in his arsenal, and He has literally everything in His arsenal.
Think about it. All of the things that could have gone wrong. What if Jesus had gotten sick and died? What if a freak accident happened and left Him unable to walk much less able to carry His own Cross? What if Herod found Him or satan sent someone after Him?
GOD is in so much control over the world and is so infinitely powerful, that He could send a baby into the world with full confidence that nothing could possibly happen that would thwart His plan. It would have been much easier to send a conquering warrior in all His power (even though that is essentially what He did anyway) because there would be nothing really to go wrong.
GOD is so big that He chose a seemingly random moment in the history of time for a baby to be born to a teenage virgin, and He knew He would be in the exact right spot 30 years later to sacrifice His own life for the sin of man.
He was so sure of His power, precision, presence and planning that He "risked" the future of the universe and the souls of all mankind on the success of a newborn. That is Power!
I have to tell you, someone like that deserves to be praised. Someone like that deserves to be trusted. Someone like that deserves for us to give everything to Him all the time.
In a couple of days, we are celebrating one of the most powerful displays the world has ever seen. A display that started in the womb and ended in death, resurrection, and eternal life for Him and for us. If He can come here, plan that, and accomplish His goal, how can we not trust Him for everything?
If He can do that, He can fix Haiti and He can fix America!