Good morning to all. Take time to tell someone this morning you love them. I pray you are off to a great start. Christmas is just around the corner. See message below:
What the world needs now is love. Just imagine how beautiful the world would be if we could all love one another like Jesus loves us. In spite of our faults, weaknesses, mistakes, wrongdoings, etc., God still loves us. There is so much hatred, evil, deception, malice, lying, corruption, violence, etc. that love is needed more than ever. The sad news is that we are witnessing hatred from the national leaders all the way down to our brothers and sisters in the street. May all of us be reminded this Christmas that we can all do better.
The word love is a powerful word, but we have diminished and diluted its meaning by misusing and misinterpreting it.
Think about the people who say they love you or think about the times you use the word so loosely and freely. Is it difficult for you to tell someone close to you that you love them? Is it difficult to tell a family member or friend you love them? If the answer is yes, then let’s try telling others during this holiday season that we love them unconditionally. I don’t know about you, but I learned a long time ago that there are people who (1) pretend and act like they love us, (2) there are those who say they love us, but thank God, (3) there are those who we know genuinely love us. That is the way we should feel about God. He loves us unconditionally and genuinely without question.
We refer to that unconditional love as agape love. A love that is bestowed on those who are undeserving, in spite of the possibility of rejection or heart break. God loves us and He is agape. When we invite God’s spirit to dwell in us, agape takes up residence. Now we have the ability to love others the same way God does, without condition. When we love unconditionally, others will catch a glimpse of God through us.
Christmas is about love, because God is love.
“Go is love, and He who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.” 1 John 4:16
We will be giving gifts on Christmas day to family members and friends. I admonish us to think about what we have given to those in need during the 2021 year. The pandemic has really placed a strain on many families. May we remember that the gifts we give can change the world. A gift to the underprivileged or needy can remind a loved one that they really matter and they are loved.
“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more.” H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Scripture tells us in 1 Corinthians 13:13, the three most important things to have are faith, hope and love. But the greatest of them is love. The apostle Paul tells us that love isn’t jealous, boastful, proud, self-seeking, or easily angered. He says that love “always protects. It always trusts. It always hopes. It never gives up” (verse 7). If we don’t have love, any work and service we do for the Lord and his people is worthless. Christians should try to apply all three even though it is challenging. May Christmas remind us to keep trying.
Christmas is always a very festive and celebratory time in most of our homes. Let us not forget that it celebrates the birth of Jesus the Christ, and for Christians He is the most important historical figure in our world.
After the Last Supper, Jesus stressed the importance of love by giving the disciples a “new commandment” to love one another as he loved them, so that people would recognize Jesus’s friends by their love.
May we, this Christmas, show love in such a magnificent way that others may see Jesus in us.
Christmas also reminds us that God is with us. May we during these most difficult unprecedented times, take time to remember who we are and what we are called to be. May God bless all of us and our families during this most holy season.
Christmas reminds us also of miracles we have seen. May this Christmas provide a miracle by causing all of us to love one another a little more.
May we be more loving during this holiday season, into the new year and forever.
Not a sermon, just my thoughts!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor