Wednesday, December 23, 2015

On the way to the cross

It's just how our family devotions have worked out.

We started reading this book several months ago during our family devotions.  We liked how it is actual scripture, but it leaves out some of the boring/repetitive/gory parts, and the text is easy to understand.  About a month ago, we had completed the Old Testament and started reading about Jesus' birth story. Hubby suggested that maybe we should put this book aside, and read about Christ's birth later.  Like around Christmas time.  But we didn't really have another devotional book to read that we liked, so we kept plugging away.

We've read on, and this week, as the world prepares to celebrate the birth of the Messiah, we are reading about His death.

It's a jarring juxtaposition.  At this time of year, we see representations of Jesus everywhere, but He's cute.  And little.  And surrounded by furry, cuddly barn animals.  We get so caught up in celebrating baby Jesus that we don't remember why he was born, what he was born to do, what it's all leading up to.

We forget that Jesus is more than just that cute little baby snuggled into a feeding trough.  Jesus is also the man who performed miracles, tore up the temple, called religious leaders a brood of vipers, sweated blood, and died an excruciating death.  That's what Christmas is about.  Christmas is about God loving us enough to be with us, to experience life and death through our eyes, to forgive and redeem even our darkest parts.

Jesus was born to die.  For us.

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