Written by Roberto A. Gomez - our chief (and much appreciated) volunteer.
CHRISTMAS SEASON 12/2011
It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas ... well, not in all places. This year the economic trends in the U.S. did not improve much. Hence, in a season where finances play an important part in the pursuit of happiness for security in: shelter, food, family, and employment, such has not been the case. Hence, there is a need for which some people are beginning to wake up to; a need for the divine interventions from God.
Many years ago, the people of God began to hold on to a hope of a coming King, a liberator of captors; Christ Jesus. He was spoken off from many years before His birth. He was presented with many titles; amongst those was "Prince of Peace". Yet the most memorable and impactive is "Emmanuel", that is "God with us". In some miraculous manner, God came down to Earth in the form of Christ Jesus. It was through Christ Jesus that God presented a pure form of Himself as a means from which to liberate people from their greatest captor, sin.
As a captor, sin is very unique; it even affects a person's perspective. From one point of view, it presents itself as both pleasant and impulsive temptation(s), (e.g. you have to have or do it now). However, as time passes by, it can progressively grab a hold of you, and then take you in by its captive control; you won't see it coming. From the second point of view, you are not immune from sin, but you are granted both the authority and power, through Christ Jesus, to take a stand against both the temptations and captive power of sin. Regardless of the perspective you may be coming from, there is one answer for initial and continual liberation from sin, Christ Jesus. The sacrificial blood of Christ Jesus washes and cleanses the soul from sin. Christ Jesus is the only means by which to be cleansed from sin, but also draw near to God. Should you choose to remain free from the captivity of sin, then you must begin by establishing a relationship with Christ Jesus. Secondly, you must maintain that relationship by striving to carry out your way of life by means of the instructions God has set out in the Bible. As you set out to do so, you will face opposition, and many forms of troubles. However, be of good cheer, Christ Jesus will help you and provide for all of your needs for He has "overcome the world".
For many years, I was caught up in the excitement of the "Christmas Spirit". It used to mean a time of giving and receiving gifts, having big meals with friends and family, but also attending or participating in a Christmas program at a local church. However, it was not until the age of twenty-one, the year that I was liberated by Christ Jesus, that I began the journey of learning a fuller and more profound meaning of Christmas. Now, at the age of thirty-five, I hold a new personal meaning for the Christmas season. It is a season for which I commemorate the narrative of the people that God chose for the coming of Christ Jesus. They were ordinary people who were chosen by God but also held both humble and obedient hearts towards Him and His written Word. The state of their heart continues with me to this day, for it sets forth a standard of expectation that God's desire for the state of my own heart in obedience unto Him and servitude to those He has called me to serve.
In closing, this year the economy has not been too well for everyone. Some people are facing diverse forms of hardship. Yet in the mist of this onset of times of hardship, there is a reason for which to arise and rejoice. The reason is God's greatest gift to the world: the gift of liberation from sin through Christ Jesus.
MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!