As I thought about the last article of 2013 and the season where we celebrate the birth of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, I was reminded that it’s not just about the birth of Christ but the journey that began at His birth.  Celebrating the birth without realizing the purpose of God coming to earth would make it insignificant.  Jesus was born so that He could fulfill prophesy and the promises of the Father.  Jesus was born in humble surroundings to humble earthly parents.  He remained humble throughout His life and yet He touched countless lives everywhere that He went.  What is so phenomenal is the fact He is still changing lives today.


Steven Curtis Chapman, Contemporary Christian Artist, has a beautiful song entitled “Broken” and the lyrics say: “I’m just a well-dressed bit I’m just a made up mess.  Working hard, trying to keep everybody impressed all the while I’m falling apart on the inside.  I look around to see is anyone like me?  First glance tells me I’m all alone in the sea.  Then I look again a little deeper and we’re all in the same boat we all just need to know we’re all broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior.  Broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior cause we’re all broken.  This is a fool’s parade, the way we masquerade trying to make everybody think it’s all okay when the truth is we’re all living a story.   What if we all got brave enough to take away all we’re hiding behind even just for a day and let the scars show even a little?  But I know the honesty will show us all to be broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior.  Broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior.  We don’t have to pretend about it we don’t have to keep acting like we’re all okay.  If we lift our lives to the cross we’ll see some reality.  That we’re all broken and we all have a Savior.  Broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior.  Broken, we’re all broken and we all need a Savior we all have a Savior.  We all need Jesus.”[1]


The lyrics to this song describe a word picture of how we are all broken and the only thing that can truly repair or remove our brokenness is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  Jesus said Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”[2]  It takes so much more energy and effort to maintain the charade we are living when, instead, we can have rest for our souls and the easy yoke that Jesus offers to us.  He also says if we will take His yoke upon us we can learn from Him.  We need to model our lives after His and learn to be gentle and humble in heart in spite of a world that thrives on self-indulgence even when it is at the expense of others.


Paul tells us You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;  to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.[3]  Our brokenness is caused by our corrupt and deceitful desires brought on by sin so the only way our brokenness can be healed is to put on the “new self” that comes from a personal relationship with the Messiah, Jesus Christ, and through that relationship we are made righteous.  Righteousness comes from what Jesus did for us and not because of anything we could do for ourselves.  That is why the celebration of the birth of Christ must be viewed in the bigger picture rather than just the event itself.  Jesus’ birth began a journey that must be completed in order for God’s plan to be fulfilled.  In the same way our personal relationship with Jesus offers a journey that allows us to be part of God’s work that is going on all around us.


Thessalonians states “May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.”[4] Broken by sin but healed by grace!  It is grace that gives us eternal hope and encouragement.  It is grace that gives us joy and peace not only in the future but in the present.  Jesus said “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.  If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in His love.  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”[5]


Through a personal relationship with Jesus we can move from broken to having His joy in you and He wants that joy to be complete.  Just as Steven Curtis Chapman’s lyrics state we are all broken and we all need a savior because we are broken.  Whether it’s a broken marriage, broken relationships, broken hearts or broken spirits, broken by emotional pain, broken hope, or broken by life circumstances that seem to be out of control, God is the master mechanic that can repair all of these things. At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another.  But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.[6]


As we celebrate this joyous season of Christmas please remember that it is a celebration beyond the birth of a child and the beginning of a journey that would accomplish God’s plan for giving you and me the ability to become heirs having hope of eternal life.  I pray that God will lead you from being broken to being an heir to His Kingdom.  Merry Christmas to you and yours and remember, Jesus IS the reason for the season we celebrate!

[1] Performed by Steven Curtis Chapman; written by Tracy L. Chapman; from the album “This Moment;”
[2] Matthew 11:28-30.  All scripture used in this article is taken from the NIV translation of the Holy Bible unless otherwise noted.
[3] Ephesians 4:22-24
[4] 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
[5] John 15:9-11
[6] Titus 3:3-7

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