TEACHER: Ken Hicks
SCRIPTURES: Various (check out the video at www.HeightsCC.com)
BOTTOM LINE: Every Day is Christmas, because Every Heart is a Manger!
QUESTION: Has God taken You Home?
It’s easy to be reminded at CHRISTmas, but sometimes I just need to continually remind myself of God’s Love and God’s Gift for us! Those days when I’m not sure why God would allow this … or do that … or ask me to do this or that, and I’m honestly wondering … Really God? Do You really love me? Because if You did, God, I’m not sure this feels like You love me, and I think we all have probably had those days.
In those days, because of what happened that day in Bethlehem, we can never question God’s Relentless LOVE for us!
How do we KNOW God Loves Us? [What Did He Do for Us?]
#1 … He CHOSE Us!
Just as carefully as we choose that CHRISTmas Tree, God so chose us! We were made to be with Him!
God knows just the place where we’re going to fit just perfect. This little corner of the world that needs some color, and He selected US with that place in Mind!
#2 … He PURCHASED Us!
He made us on Purpose … with a Purpose … and then He paid the price to take us HOME!
We don’t ask the Tree Owner to give us the Tree for FREE do we? Paul says …
1 Corinthians 6:20 … “20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
At the cost of His Own Son, we are Highly Valued and Deeply Loved by God!
#3 … He PRUNES Us!
He prunes us to be more full alive and fruitful in His Love!
John 15:1-2 … “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”
He takes an AX to our Prejudices! He takes some clippers to those areas of our life where we have self-pity, where there’s a tilt in our character that needs to be removed. He pulls the tools and makes whatever adjustments are necessary, including taking off a few of the smaller branches that aren’t needed, so we can produce more fruit!
No doubt, just like some CHRISTmas trees, we’re bent or leaning in some different directions. Maybe we have some knots on us? Maybe we feel like we’re Spiritually out of shape even? Or Broken?
But God works in LOVE to present us Perfect in His Sight!
In the MANGER, God truly showed his Relentless LOVE for us! And through the Cross, God not only defeated Death, but brought about Salvation for us! And we so need a Savior don’t we?
The question today is this … Has He taken YOU Home?
And the unbelievable thing about Jesus, is that when He was born, He brought HOPE … for ALL! None of us are beyond the Love of God! God’s Relentless Love is there, no matter how many bumps and bruises we have! It does not matter how much we’re leaning in our current condition.
Paul told the church in Galatia …
Galatians 2:20 … “20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
Our life becomes a Manger doesn’t it? Jesus is born there, and lives in and thru us, and as we experience His Love, and Love in return … something incredible happens!