What does the Christmas season make you think of? Is it the traditions you hold with your family year after year? Or maybe it's the memory a certain Christmas song brings back every time it grazes your ear. Possibly it's the cookies your grandma bakes every December that you look forward to eating one too many of. Perhaps it is using her recipe to make those cookies, because her memory lives on through it.
Christmas time is a season of belief for me. Why, do you ask...because God gave the proof of His love for us in human form. He sent Jesus to live with us. He sent Jesus to do life as we do, to work and laugh and eat and mourn just as you and I do. He sent Jesus to live life on this earth so He can understand as we do. Although not everyone believes in God as our ruler and creator, Jesus is part of our proof.
When people ask me "but how do you know God is real," I can give so many answers, but my number one is always Jesus. He was not merely a person in the Bible, but a historical figure as well. Events of His life and death were recorded not only in the Bible but by historians in ancient times as well. Extra-Biblical evidence does exist. In fact, multiple sources who did not care for Jesus recorded elements of His life that support events in the New Testament. Don't believe me? By all means, I encourage you, do the searching yourself. I understand the Bible is not enough proof for some. For those who need to see to believe, you can see the evidence if you allow yourself to be open to it. Don't come to a verdict without first reviewing all of the evidence. You may have eyes to see and ears to hear, but do you have a heart that is open to the truth?
First-century Jewish historian Flavius Josephus recorded independent accounts of people in the Bible including Pontius Pilate, Herod, John the Baptist, and Jesus. Roman historian Tacitus also recorded Jesus being put to death by Pontius Pilate. Both men had no Christian bias and in fact had different backgrounds and beliefs. The accounts were not recorded to support Christianity, they do however support the fact that Jesus lived. And these are just to name a few.
Christmas may be the season of magic and miracles and belief in so many other things that this world has given us. Our greatest gift during this season is Jesus Himself. If you are unsure where your belief lies, what is the harm in searching for the truth?
I'm afraid the harm of not looking for the truth that Jesus provides would be far more detrimental. Jesus is God in the flesh. Jesus gave us the one gift that will last forever, eternal life. No gift under the tree can compare.
What special gifts will you give your loved ones this year? Is there anyone in your circle that tiptoes the line of belief that could use a little proof? I believe belief is contagious in the best possible way. The change in you might be the proof they need. Leading by example to the skeptics around us can do more than reciting verses.
Remember, as Joyce Meyers says, "Jesus is a gentleman, He will knock but you have to open the door to let Him in." Your greatest gifts this Christmas could be the key to your faith. If the opportunity arises, hand over the key to your faith in Jesus. Share what He has done for you. He may be knocking on your door, are you knocking on His? Relationships are a two-way street. Effort has to be put forth by both parties.
This Christmas I am thankful for the gift of God in the flesh. I am thankful for the ideas He has laid on my heart and the gift to be able to share them with you. Thank you for your time and support. I hope my words have unlocked the key to your heart over the past year. Merry Christmas and I can't wait to see what Jesus has in store for us in 2022!