The Night Before Christmas

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Journal Excerpt from 12.24.2011 It’s the night before Christmas, and as I’m meditating on the reason for the season I’m reminded of the simplistic, elementary understanding of God’s love. I often think about (and preach about) the HARD truths of the gospel: how Christ calls us to deep commitment and an abandonment of ourselves in order to pursue life in Him. However, sometimes a concentrated focus on that aspect of the gospel can cause me to neglect the heart of the gospel, which is God’s extravagant love. As i focus on the essence of John 1:14 (God became flesh) I’m floored at the depth of humility our God displayed. He stepped off His throne in order to be born through a human birth canal, just to be raised around a bunch of people who didn’t believe in Him, and ultimately to be beaten, spit on, stripped and murdered publicly and humiliatingly – ALL because it was necessary to display, apply and lavish His love on me. I picture Jesus looking at me while taking every snap of the whip, every blow to the face, every nail to the flesh… smiling at me, saying “you are SO worth it, Sean.” I had to put my pen down while writing it just to worship. How amazing is my God. How inadequate is my love for Him – yet even in the midst of my imperfect love for Him, He still loves me all the more! So as we’re celebrating the commencement of Christ’s humility, I pray for a continued realization of this simplistic, elementary truth: “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”

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