He came into my office already possessing a negative attitude. He asked, “Do you get involved with all this hub-bub concerning Christmas?” I told him, “Yes, but I try my best not to go overboard.” We talked; he, like many, knows the Christmas story. But, he said his sporadic childhood church attendance at a Catholic church didn’t leave much of an impression. He, like the world, knows the story but the meaning has been lost in the shuffle or should I say, lost in the “hub-bub”.
Why all the hub-bub? God comes to earth in the person of Jesus, walks among us, dies for our sins upon a gruesome cross, takes God’s wrath intended for us, and by God’s power, Jesus is raised from the dead victorious over sin and death. We are pardoned slaves to sin who will live eternally. It is all a gift to us and we shall reign eternally with God. This should all be a comfort to those of us who believe.
Some may say they know the Story. They think they even know what it means but how is Jesus going to make tomorrow any better than today? We sinners are all short-sighted. Does God care that I lost my wife and the loneliness and tears have been crushing? Does Christ make any difference today and in the future? Remember these things in these perilous days:
1. God cares about your tears. He keeps track of them. Psalm 56:8 says, “Record my lament; list my tears on your scroll-- are they not in your record?” God Himself will wipe our tears away. “For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes." Rev. 7:17.
2. Your prayers are heard—the angels gather them up. Rev. 8:3-4: “Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints, on the golden altar before the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel's hand.”
3. Your death is precious to God. “Then I heard a voice from heaven say, ‘Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’ ‘Yes,’ says the Spirit, ‘they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.’ I looked, and there before me was a white cloud, and seated on the cloud was one ‘like a son of man’ with a crown of gold on his head and a sharp sickle in his hand.” Rev. 14:13-14.
4. We are slaves to sin, purchased by Christ to serve God and reign with Him eternally. Rev. 5:9-10: “And they sang a new song: ‘’You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth."
5. Do not be afraid! For Jesus Christ is with us now and He will return. He has and will always be in control. Rev. 1:12-19: “I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone "like a son of man," dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance. When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: "Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades. "Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later.
Lift up your head; you are a child of THE King. Yes, though we may suffer for a little while, God cares, God rules and we will reign with Him, and He will come again. Don’t be afraid. Jesus was born God man—the manger is empty. Jesus was slain for our sin—the cross is empty. Jesus was dead and is now alive forever—the grave is empty; our God reigns. That is what all the hub-bub is about.