He is the Gift

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“He’s making a list,
He’s checking it twice;
He’s gonna find out,
Who’s naughty or nice…
… Santa Claus is comin’ to town.”

As a young child, I lived and breathed everything Santa. All year round, except at Easter when I idolized the bunny, I talked about the old fat man with the white beard and red suit. The day came, in the winter of second grade, when I was honored to play the role of Kris Kringle for our entire elementary school. I went into each classroom bringing Christmas cheer and subsequent dental bills from the cavity-causing candy.

The following year brought my “Great Disappointment.” Santa, the elves, the reindeer, and even Frosty the Snowman, were nothing but a myth, promulgated to sell toys and sweets and to promote selfishness. I was crushed. My dreams of a man bringing joy and happiness at Christmas were dashed on the rocks of materialism.

Fast forward many years. The disillusionment of the holiday farce gave way to a general disenchantment with living. Ultimately this dissatisfaction caused me to question what was of value in life. This questioning led to a desperate search for meaning, not only at Christmas but in human existence.

Buddhism teaches suffering and nothingness. Hinduism is an amalgamation of confusing fiction. Taoism shares philosophy but no power. Islam reveals a god who provides no assurance, even to its founder.

Finally, I found the Gift. Perhaps I should say, He found me—a quivering mass of insecurities and fear. With trembling uncertainty, I prayed to the One who had been calling me since my youth.  The Babe of Bethlehem, who became the Son of Man, heard my feeble cries and calmed the satanic storm that raged in my mind.

Jesus Christ set me free . . . from addictions, fear, guilt, shame and sin. Only a god of merciful lovingkindness—the God who is Love, Jesus Christ—could create not only the universe but a plan where He, in His infinite compassion, would permit Himself to be tortured in mind and body so that we might be healed in heart and soul. 

Sadly, more people will associate the winter solstice holiday with materialism than with the One who was born under the angelic star. There are places around the world where they know about the rotund, red-suited myth, but they know nothing of the Rock of Ages. There are billions who will hear of a reindeer named Rudolph but never sing of the Lamb of God.

Please prayerfully consider going to share the light of this Gift with the unreached who sit in darkness. Tell them there is a Man who brings joy and happiness, and He does not break into your home through your chimney. This Christmas, tell them that the One born in a manger is coming again to bring the gift of eternal life to those who respond to His love.

Lift up the trumpet, and loud let it ring:
Jesus is coming again!
Cheer up, ye pilgrims, be joyful and sing;
Jesus is coming again!
Coming again, coming again,
Jesus is coming again!

Please contact us at service@afmonline.org to share the true meaning of Christmas with those who have only known the impostor.

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