How did you do remembering the true meaning of Christmas? Two thousand years ago, a virgin girl gave birth to a baby boy, the Savior of the world, God incarnate.
The word remember has two parts. The prefix re- means again, as in replay, restore, and regenerate. The word member has to do with being a part of a whole, as in staff member, team member, or family member. When we remember, we pull pieces of past events into our present minds.
Remembering Christ’s birth is good and right and helpful. But the point of Christmas, the point of the Incarnation—in fact, the point of Christianity as a whole—isn’t as much us remembering as it is God re-membering.
Sin fractured all of Creation, including people as a whole and the human person individually. Where people were designed to live in loving harmony, sin wrought suspicion, division, and violence. Where man and woman were created with differences that complement one another, sin wrought conflict. And where you and I were created to be whole men or women, sin dis-integrated each one of us into a sum of warring parts.
This is why when Jesus gave the most important commandment, He didn’t just say, “Love God,” but instead, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). He knows what you and I experience daily: We are fractured beings.
Our wills may say yes to God while our emotions say no. Our hearts may love Him while our bodies hunger for other lovers. Our spirits may be willing but our flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41), the good we want to do we do not do, and instead we do the evil things we don’t want to do (Romans 7:17).
Where have you experienced evidence that you are fractured?
- You knew you didn’t really want to, but you watched pornography again.
- You told your girlfriend you felt convicted to stop having sex before marriage, but one thing led to another…
- During puberty at the same time your body became able to procreate heterosexually, you discovered you were attracted to the same sex.
- You know your husband loves you, but you tense up in response to abuse from years ago.
- You determined to be more patient but lost your temper again.
- You believe in God but struggle to trust He actually loves you.
My friends, have hope! Christmas isn’t about how much you could keep Jesus in mind. In fact, when you wanted to do a good job remembering the true meaning of Christmas but got swept up in all the holiday busy-ness, when your stomach was full but your hand reached for more, when you sang the carols with your mouth but your heart wasn’t in it, when you knew it wouldn’t help but turned to porn to medicate stress, when you shook your head that no one had room for pregnant Mary but you didn’t open yours to the stranger, orphan, or widow, this is why Jesus came.
Where sin has dismembered humanity, Jesus has come in the flesh to remember us.
Jesus, we are not content to remain as we are. We long to become all You created us to be! As we step into 2019, remember us!
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