The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. -Isaiah 9:2 (KJV)
As far as the weather is concerned this has been an unusual Christmas season. Instead of cold weather and snow we have had here in southwest Virginia a great amount of rain and warmer temperatures. The other day as I was trying to clean the mud off of my dogs’ paws before letting them back into the house I was singing, “I’m dreaming of a muddy Christmas, unlike about any we’ve had before.” Ada and Leon could only smile and wag their tales and I know the irony of my song was wasted on them, yet it described my sentiments at the time. Perhaps this cloudy, dreary, and rainy weather will pass and it will begin to feel like winter.
I will be the first to say how much I depend on sunshine. Even if the weather is bitterly cold as long as the sun is shining I am okay and my mood usually remains high. However, when we have a run of rainy and cloudy days I begin to feel a little down. When it comes to our spiritual condition we will remain in a state of darkness until the light of Christ comes into our hearts. The Scripture foretold of Christ’s coming as a light which would shine on those wandering in spiritual darkness. This darkness is an oppressive force from which there is one escape and one remedy; a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
Life is filled with enough trouble to leave us feeling trapped in a state of hopelessness. Christ’s coming brought a blessed light which pierces the darkness of the soul and lets the powerful light of God shine into our hearts. Just as sunshine energizes us on a clear day so does the light of Christ lift us up and give new and certain hope. We no longer have to stay captive to sin and despair. Instead we can rise up and walk forward in confident faith. Jesus’ coming shows the world how God’s gift of salvation is available to all. We don’t have to pay for it because Christ has already done so. Ours is to receive the gift freely as it was freely given to the world.
Today Andrea and I met some old friends for lunch who were in town for Christmas. We had not seen them in nearly three years so we had a good amount of catching up to do. During the meal our friends gave us a very precious gift which touched us deeply. The gift was given out of the kindness and love they feel toward us. There were no strings attached, no hidden agenda, and no thought of receiving anything in return.
This is the attitude which God gave to the world the greatest gift of all which is the birth of Jesus Christ. A wonderful light has dawned. Cease from walking in the darkness and begin today walking in the light of Christ by receiving Him as Savior.
Christmas is a wonderful time, and may we never forget the true reason we celebrate. Jesus Christ has come and as the angels sang, “Glory to God in highest” (Luke 2:14).