Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow Me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” – Matthew 16:24-26
At Christmas time, we celebrate the birth of the Savior as a tiny baby, on a silent night in a humble stable, beneath a beautiful star. Glorious angels, gentle shepherds and men of great wealth complete the nativity scene. At this time, it is difficult to remember that this sweet moment was the beginning of a difficult, heart-wrenching journey of unimaginable suffering undertaken by our God to save our souls.
Things of value start as simple elements that are tempered through tough times, obstacles and challenges. Submitting to the pressure, working through the journey, will buff our souls into the shining jewel that is worthy of our King.
Read the story of Christ’s birth found in Luke 2:1-21 in any version of the Bible that you prefer. If you can, share the story out loud with any friends and family. If you are alone, read out loud anyway. Light a candle or sit by the fireplace. Play Christmas carols softly in the background (maybe you’ll want to sing along). Make this a true moment of worship where you connect with God the Father, God the Spirit, and God in Jesus Christ the Son.
Sue Breland, Worship For One: Advent Emmanuel ©