December 12, 2019 | Jon Hall
The birth of Jesus brought an assortment of the ruling class, the wise and the learned, the religious and common people to hear about and to observe this intervention of God into human history. Jesus came to speak into every class and to every people and to every tongue and nation.
Jesus’ birth is more than just an idea or a historical fact that has no relevance to us personally. The message is the same to all, and the gifts of the wisemen of gold, frankincense and myrrh give perspective to that message. Gold represents Christ’s kingship; frankincense, his healing power; and myrrh, a common ingredient in embalming, represents his death and resurrection that conquered death, sin and Satan.
One of many applications to all of this is the connections it means between God and us, and us with family and loved ones – specifically, the healing of ourselves, our relationships and the power that is unleashed through the gospel and God’s Spirit to accomplish miraculous deeds in the name of Jesus.
However, even in our own lives we can suffer from the disbelief portrayed in the movie “Miracle on 34th Street.” This child’s movie with an adult application is that of not at first believing what is actually true until there is an undeniable personal experience that changes our belief about Santa.
The Christmas story is a challenge for our culture. For non-believers, the baby Jesus in a manger is an okay thought and possibly an historical fact, but no more than that. It’s as real as Santa is on 34th Street. We, too, can find ourselves in a similar vague unreality.
We know Jesus is real, but where is the power in my faith experience that is displayed and discussed in the gospels and epistles? Why aren’t my prayers answered? Why is there still so much confusion and discord in my family? Why don’t I have victory over my sin and a change of heart over my doubts?
God is moving at Grace. We have seen lives changed and transformed, and a new sense of God’s power working in our church family. Worship is different. God is intervening in mighty ways.
I believe that in 2020 this movement of God will continue to grow. Do you have unhealed relationships or prodigal family members? Are you currently out of step with God, disconnected to the Holy Spirit or just dragging through the routines of the faith?
Consider saying to God in this 2019 Christmas season in whatever way is meaningful, “Lord I need to see you act in my life to heal my heart, to restore my life, to gain victory over sin and to see my loved ones returned to You.”
Let’s all ask God, who has all power to do all that we ask or can imagine, to do a personal miracle for a real and deep concern that we have.
Know, too, that God has moved to activate a prayer team that is available on Sundays. Whether it is a prayer request for others or for a personal spiritual, emotional or physical healing, we have seen God do all of that. In 2020, we want effective prayer with God after services to be as commonplace as the conversations with others in the hallways.