“Bless the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! He has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing that comes from heaven.”-Ephesians 1:3
Fred Craddock once told a parable about a man who moved into a cottage equipped with a stove and simple furnishings. As the sharp edge of winter cut across the landscape, the cottage grew cold as did its occupant. He went out back and pulled a few boards off the house to kindle the fire. The fire was warm, but the house seemed as cold as before. More boards came off for a larger fire to warm the now even colder house, which in return required an even larger fire, demanding more boards. In a few days the man cursed the weather, cursed the house, cursed the stove, and moved away.
The futility the man felt is the futility of those who try to live the Christian life without Christ. Jesus the Christ is the Word that was in the beginning with God and was God. He is alive and with us today.
- To those of us who are struggling with disease and illness, Jesus is the Great Physician. Know of his healing and wholeness.
- To those of us who are seeking meaning and purpose, Jesus is the way, the truth, the life. Know of God’s design for your life.
- To those of us who are drowning in misunderstandings and missing the point of God’s love, Jesus is God’s love in human form hugging us to himself. Know that Jesus can set your feet on holy ground when all the ground around you is crumbling away. Jesus is the solid rock, the foundation for living as God created us to live. Jesus is the way to reconciliation, healing, and hope. May the New Year bring you opportunities to listen, trust, and obey.
To some people these are shallow words, hollow and meaningless. To others these words are words of hope in the midst of seeking a way to make this world more what God intended it to be.
Our purpose and power is found in Jesus Christ.
Who is Christ to you? What difference will your faith make in your life this coming year? Share your thoughts.
Prayer for the day
Blessed are you, O God, creator of the universe and giver of all good gifts to your children. I am grateful that you have provided all I need to be who you created me to be. By your grace, keep me connected to you. Whether it is through the people you place in my life or the situations and circumstances in which you place me, let me always know that you are providing what I need to be who you created me to be in Jesus Christ. By your grace let me work for your shalom at all times and places. Amen.