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Christmas is always a special time for many to celebrate, trim the tree, hang the lights and enjoy festivities and gift giving. Joy and hope seem to permeate the atmosphere as we look toward a new year brimming with endless possibilities. For others, it is a challenge to wade through what seems to be a path of never ending celebrations, watching joyful people who appear to have it all; while inside you wrestle with pain, loss and sometimes despair. Unfulfilled expectations can make Christmas intolerable. Whatever your experience, this Christmas can be your best ever by not merely focusing on the festivities, personal loss or regret, but turning your eyes upon Jesus; for He is the true gift of this season.

Believers often describe Jesus as Lord, Savior or use other names describing His character as Truth, Hope, Redeemer and Light, Friend and Shepherd. Over the centuries almost everyone has heard the supernatural story of His birth as well as His crucifixion and resurrection, but what makes Jesus so special and separates Him from other deities. What makes Him such a great gift?

For one thing Jesus, is the only one who is able to forgive mankind of their sin. Whatever you have said or done, no matter how shameful, Jesus has the divine power to cleanse you and forgive you where sin no longer dictates your life. He gives you a clean slate to begin again. 

Secondly, after you invite Him to be your Savior and Lord, He is the only one who can renew and transform you into the new person He wants you to be. His supernatural work accomplished through Holy Spirit, will penetrate deep within your heart, mind and soul, causing you to begin to think more clearly and make wiser decisions and choices. He will patiently help you to renew your mind, change your thoughts and ways of thinking, transforming you into a new being. You have the potential to become all that He desires for you to be.

These two qualities certainly make Jesus the greatest man that ever lived, but there is even more to celebrate. He is the only one who provides the pathway for you to live with Him eternally in paradise (Luke 23:43). By simply asking Him into your heart, into your life and getting to know Him, He has promised you will live eternally with Him. I sometimes ponder this point which is too spectacular to actually comprehend with our natural mind. Life everlasting, with Jesus in heaven, living in paradise eternally. He is the only one who can grant this future to you. He is not only the greatest gift but the greatest gift giver.

So as you approach this season, whether you have met Him or not, I submit to you these points in hope you will take a moment to savor and give thanks to the greatest gift God has ever given to you and to mankind - His only Son. If you have never met Him or desired to trust Him, it is never to late to become acquainted with this loving Son of God who became man for you. Whatever your holiday affords you, Jesus is there beside you. He desires to walk with you through your life journey and through His covenant of peace bring you peace, safety, security, prosperity, health, and increase. Yes, it really is possible for you to have new life, filled with hope and renewed vision. As you meet with family and friends this holiday, preparing to ring in the New Year, please consider opening your arms to receive the most expensive and extraordinary gift of love and life from God your Father to you. His name is Jesus and He gave His life for you.

A blessed Christmas and New Year to you and your family,

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