M e r r y C h r i s t m a s !
"Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men." Mark 1:17
I couldn't let this day go by without my visiting with for a moment. I've missed you. And like you, I have been deeply touched by all the tragedies surrounding us lately.
I believe most of us wish to celebrate today as we struggle with the continued tragedies that just seem to plague our small world lately. Unfortunately, tragic events are nothing new to our beautiful globe. We don't get to escape them. We aren't given a free pass.
But we are given free will.
Even those who don't believe are given the gift of free will.
Today, we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. God's only son. And through Him, those who mourn these recent tragic events, "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." Revelation 21:4. (NIV)
I don't pretend to understand the injustice of it all. But I do understand this is a fallen and very broken world. And for that reason, I am all the more grateful to lean on Christ, and trust in faith, that He has all the true and correct answers and it is okay if I don't understand.
Free will is a gift God gives because without it, one can't truly love. No one has the power to force another to truly love. Love is only love when given freely. God loves us so much, He wants us to experience real love, receive His real love, and for you to be able to give real love. God waits patiently, wanting so much to receive your love - hence your free will. He has an open door policy. He will never force His way into your heart, nor will He force you into His, but welcomes you always, and waits. And we all know that love overcomes evil every single time. Each and every time there is a horrible event... love, compassion, tenderness and help immediately shows up, and evil retreats.
Every single time.
"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." 1 Corinthians 13:13 (NIV).
To me, Christmas is the day of love. Out of love, God sent His son to show us how to love among many other things. Out of love for us, Jesus died. And out of love, God continues to let us have our free will, even though there is a very small number of us humans (relatively speaking) who choose to use their free will for evil. But look how many of us use our free will to love, encourage, inspire, help, teach, comfort, assist, feed, cloth, care for,....the list is endless.
I want to thank you for all the lovely messages, visits, and emails you have sent me since my surgery and ER visits - I felt a lot of love from you. And I believe it is your love that will help me heal over these next few months.
And it will be love that will help all those in mourning to heal as well.
Never underestimate the power of love. Where there is love, there is Jesus.
Love is extremely powerful because it is the one thing that only grows larger and stronger the more you give it away to others.
Merry Christmas, and know that you are very loved.