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There is no shortage of bad and ugly news in our sad world, but CHRISTMAS is an exercise in BALANCE! If there is one thing we can learn from Christmas, it is that Christ left heaven – a place of perfection, peace, and love – to enter our corrupt world … made corrupt by us, sinful beings. Yes, God could have made us perfect little puppets that obeyed his every wish, but in his opinion, individual freedom was more important, more valuable. Since he created us each special, different, and unique, he comprehends the value of uniqueness and potential. He birthed into each of us a unique blend of talents and abilities intended for the betterment of humankind. It is our corrupt nature that ruined everything and perverted these gifts and abilities to selfish gain. Individual freedom is God’s idea, and we can only hope to live freely as we seek and serve him.

NativityChristmas reminds us that we really should work to use our own personal freedoms, gifts and abilities to help our neighbors. God understood our predicament and gave his very one Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus gave up his place in heaven and came to this dark earth as a helpless infant to endure the same torments of earth that you and I endure daily. The difference? He endured without sin, without anger, without jealousy, without greed … without petty frustrations, without coveting the neighbor’s Caddy or 55 inch plasma.

So amidst the bad and ugly news, JOY comes. LIGHT comes to our dark world, though many do not perceive it. Darkness tries to cover our nakedness, but Light uncovers and exposes TRUTH. This is our mission always, but we must be careful that the darkness does not overtake us. With the volume of dark deceptions in our nation, in this administration, in our world, we must guard our own perspective, our own hearts, lest the darkness take over our own hearts. We can face the darkness only as we stand in the Light.

Christmas is a time for the LIGHT to shine. Even in our sterilized secular society, the BRIGHTNESS of this season shines. We mourn the babies slain; we mourn our freedoms lost, we mourn the direction of our nation; we mourn the choice America has made … Yet in our time of mourning, LIGHT SHINES.

“In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God and the Word was God.
He was with God in the beginning.
Through him all things were made;
without him nothing was made that has been made.
In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”

John 1: 1 – 5