The Way in a Manger

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” – John 14:6 (NIV)

The years prior to Jesus being born were very dark. Isaiah says that people looked for light, but all was darkness. God had been silent for many years, and people were desperate for direction. There was confusion, distress, and yet – hope.

In the midst of great darkness, God’s light is unmistakable. God uses the most difficult of circumstances to show his grace and love to the world. A season of trial leaves us empty handed, stripped down, and humbled by life. There is no worldly comfort to hold on to. And yet, we can have hope. We can have hope because God has promised us good things. John 10:10 says, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (KJV). That means that even in our darkest hour, we can have hope knowing that greater things are coming. When we hold onto God’s promises, our faith yields hope, and hope can carry us on till we see the promise fulfilled. 

It’s been a little over one year since I lost my infant son, Samuel. In the beginning of the mourning process, it felt like life would never fix itself. But, as I turned my eyes from my circumstance and I surrendered my questions to God, I began to see the light again. I prayed and asked God to redeem what was lost. I asked him to use this story for good. I surrendered myself to his will for my redemption.

As the year unfolded, I began to sense God leading me to pray for pregnant moms and other babies in need of healing. I fought with the thoughts of this not making sense. Yet, it seemed like if I would just honor the call to pray, that God was going to do miracles for these moms. So, I began stepping out in faith with a confidence only God could give, and God has been so faithful. By God using me to pray for these little ones, I truly believe he is redeeming my loss. Not only that, but I know that he has great plans for my future family too. The hope of Jesus showing up through my prayers has driven me forward even in the midst of great pain. I knew what he promised, and I made up my mind that darkness was not going to win in my life.

When Jesus showed up in the manger, he made the way for us to be reconciled to God, thus reconnecting us to the source of light. People who understood the prophecies and were awaiting the arrival of the promised Messiah rejoiced simply because he had shown up. Jesus would have never gone to the cross for us if he didn’t show up in the manger. In the same way, God’s promises for our life will never be fulfilled if we don’t follow his way.

When Jesus appeared publicly, he declared the truth that would set us free. His words and actions brought a clear vision of who God was and how we were to interact with him. This truth was so important because we could finally see and know the divine design for human life.

When Jesus fulfilled his mission, laying his life aside for the final time and then arose from the dead, he granted us the life we had lost. The way and the truth could not be complete without the life. Our own efforts to live the way Jesus lived would continually fall short, and we could never make up for our past. Jesus’ death on the cross paid the price for all our sin. His resurrection made us a new creation. By accepting Jesus as our Savior, our sin is paid for and we are given new life. This new life empowers us to live in the way and the truth.

In whatever circumstance you find yourself today, take hold of God’s promises. Let his promises for your life bring you hope! Praise God for the good things he has done and will do in your life. Be disciplined to find joy where you are right now. Take courage, wait and see what the Lord will do!

God is With You

"Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means 'God is with us.'" – Matthew 1:23 (NLT)

Jesus is still with us today in the person of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the greatest gift God could give to his children because it is the power of God within us. It is a remarkable promise that God is always with us and we can connect with him anytime and anywhere.  

But, what happens when you find yourself asking, “What’s the point of God being with me anyway?”