The Hope of Christmas

The Hope of Christmas | https://acoupleofstarsandahappyface.wordpress.com

 

Unto us a Child is born,

unto us a Son is given,

and the government will be on His shoulders.

And He will be called

Wonderful Counselor,

Mighty God,

Everlasting Father,

Prince of Peace,

JESUS

for He will save his people from their sins.

 

Isaiah‬ ‭9:6‬; Matthew‬ ‭1:21‬‬‬

 

May each of you enjoy the blessings of Christmas and find the Hope, Joy, Peace, Comfort and Love that is wrapped in the gift of God’s Son.

Merry Christmas!

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A Year of Smiles – Day 344: The SMILES of Christmas

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Christmas SMILE #10 (Reason to SMILE #344): THE LIGHTS

There’s a house on my drive home from work that is decked with a huge display of Christmas lights. Glowing Christmas characters and flashing trees fill the yard. And if you tune into a particular radio frequency, you can even hear Christmas music playing along with the blinking lights. This house is a bright and cheery beacon of Christmas spirit on an otherwise dark and quiet stretch of road.

The lights of Christmas are beautiful and whether it’s a simple string of white bulbs draped over the azalea bushes or a grandiose exhibit of colorful luminaries dancing wildly to Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s “Carol of the Bells”, you cannot deny the cheer these lights bring to a dark and dreary world. And for the few brief moments we are enjoying their brilliant display along a neighborhood street or basking in their soft glow around the family Christmas tree, we find a sense of comfort, peace and joy. We forget our worries and we find a SMILE.

Then we drive down the road or unplug the tree lights and the darkness surrounds us once again, stealing away our security and contentment.

Oh, but the respite we find while enjoying the lights of Christmas does not have to end when their gleam can no longer be seen. The darkness does not have to overrun our lives. For there is a Light that brings unwavering joy and everlasting peace. This Light reaches the darkest crevices of our lives, drives out the shadows of our hopelessness and despair and brings hope to a weary world, to a weary soul, to a weary you and to a weary me.

This True Light of Christmas is Jesus. He is the reason for our celebration, the reason for our joy. He is the reason we can SMILE in the midst of our darkest nights.

The people walking in darkness
    have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
    a light has dawned.
You have enlarged the nation
    and increased their joy;

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:2-3a, 6 (NIV)

A tiny baby born in Bethlehem pierced the darkness of a dying world more than two thousand years ago. Though the shadow of death followed Him, the Light of the Son of God could not be extinguished, even on the cross. The Light of our Risen Savior and Reigning King still shines brightly for all to see today. And though the shadows of darkness threaten to overtake us, we’ve no need to fear. The True Light of Christmas has conquered the darkness so you and I can have life – a life filled with uncontainable joy!

 

A Year of Smiles – Day 238

Reason to SMILE #238: A HAND TO HOLD


When waves are crashing all around,

When winds are whipping bold,

Lift up your eyes and you will see

A hand for you to hold.

 
When fear is knocking at your door,

When doubts have left you cold,

Take heart for there will always be

A hand for you to hold.

 
He’s always there to rescue you.

He’ll give you strength untold.

Just speak His name and you will find

A hand for you to hold.

“Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him.”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭14:29b-31‬a NIV‬‬

A Year of Smiles – Day 43

Reason to SMILE #43: THE NAME OF JESUS

I remember hearing a story when I was a child of my grandfather working as a utility lineman.  His job was to climb the poles and string the wires.  It was, and still is, a dangerous job.  A lineman needs a dependable crew and for my grandfather, it was important that these men also believed in God.  Eventually, my grandfather was partnered with a man who proclaimed to be an atheist and my grandfather had his qualms about stringing wire with him.  He said that if he had to be on top of those poles working with such a powerful force, he’d much rather be with someone who believed in an even stronger and higher power.

It happened one day that the man who did not believe in God had an accident and fell from a pole.  As the man began to fall, my grandfather heard him cry out, “God, help me!”  The accident was not fatal.  From that day forward, my grandfather had no more concerns about working the lines with this man for this “atheist” knew Who’s Name to call when it mattered most.

The name of Jesus – it means different things to different people.  For some, Jesus is the name of a character from a book of stories taught to them as a child.  For others, Jesus is a name that is cried out in anger and is often coupled with expletives and used as profanity.  To some, Jesus is the name of a good man, a teacher who lived long ago from whom we can learn valuable life lessons.  To others, Jesus is the name of an angry and tyrannical god that cares nothing about human pain and suffering.  Still, for others, Jesus is the name of the Son of the true and living God, the Savior of the world and the Hope of all mankind.

What does the Name of Jesus mean to you?  Does it make you angry or sorrowful when you hear the name of Jesus?  Or does the mention of His name bring JOY to your soul and a SMILE to your face like it does for me?

Proverbs 18:10 (NIV) 

The name of the Lord is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.

Acts 4:12 (NIV) 

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.

Romans 10:13 (NIV) 

For, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

1 Corinthians 6:11 (NIV)  

And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

John 1:14 (NIV)

The Word [Jesus] became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.