There is a scene in the church Christmas production, at least one, each year where tears bubble up and spill over because of the profound reality portrayed. For me, this year, it was the resurrection. Specifically, the lyrics to He’s Alive sunk deep into my spirit. When you have felt the hand of death try to steal your breath, the truth of the message in that song becomes overwhelming. The dramatic pause as I watched the sacrificed body of Christ disappear, and the chill that came when the light shown around the stone in the thundering silence of the moment, brought the reality of what he has done for me, from the depths of my spirit up to the surface. My quiet weeping through the song is because of the visual testimony, which showed the spiritual truth. I am alive today because of what he did. The reality is that even if death had taken the breath from my body, I would still be alive with him. “Oh death where is your sting?” The tomb is empty and therefore my grave will be so as well.
And oh the grace…amazing does not begin to describe how utterly magnificent the grace of God is. To take my place, in that tomb, despite my lack of holiness…only love is that strong. Only unconditional, self-sacrificing, abundant love for me could have put him there and only God’s power and unbelievable grace could have raised him. In reality, God’s all encompassing love for me was his motive for allowing his son to be killed. It was the only way he could be with me…and so he endured the heartache of watching his only son die, while Jesus endured the agony of a brutal death for the same reason. You know he didn’t have to come then. He could have waited and come at a time when “humane” death is the execution of choice, but he didn’t. He knew blood had to be part of the sacrifice. If that doesn’t make you think about how valuable you are to him…nothing will. He thinks I am worth it. He thinks you are worth it. Whew…it blows me away to see his love demonstrated on my behalf. The sacrifice, the pain, the blood…all of it was worth it to him to be with you each and every day.
The scene at the very end, when baby Jesus was held up in the spot light for all to see, was a stunning reminder of why we celebrate “Christ”mas. Life. He took off his glory to show us his love, in innocence and purity. So we celebrate his birth…his coming to the rescue as an innocent baby…and we rejoice with our tears that he carried out his plan so that we can stand in his grace…and worship. It is all because of our great worth to him.
Merry Christmas!

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