This blog isn’t at all what I envisioned. I just returned from a weeklong trip to northern Minnesota, a nineteen-hour journey from the Nashville area. I had a lot of time to plot and strategize on the drive there and back. My main goal when I returned home was to “hit it hard”, meaning that I intended to let loose with both barrels on this site, to expose darkness.
That is how it often works, me planning and God laughing as He totally alters my course. Instead of the both barrels being unloaded, I instead offer a message of peace and surrender, not of battle. Don’t get me wrong. We’re in a battle alright and unable to let down our guard. Still, while we celebrate the season and focus on the fact that God came in the flesh, Immanuel, God with us, we also need to seek His peace in our lives. It takes a concerted effort to allow Peace to reign supreme when the world is pulling us a dozen different directions, even good, family-focused directions.
Besides the busyness of the season, it’s easy to keep our minds trained on the darkness surrounding us to the extent that we fail to narrow in on the soon-coming Light. That’s something I address in Daybreak, the fact that we must fix our eyes on Jesus more than the rising darkness. Christmas allows us to do just that, an opportunity to stand in awe that Jesus came as a baby to save those who would accept His offer of forgiveness. It’s also the perfect time to remind one another that He’s coming again to rescue those who are His. Love comes for the beloved.
Right now, in this season when many are usually open to hearing the name of Jesus, those who most of the year aren’t, let them find you as His ambassador of peace rather than one of hostility. My both barrels in this season will never show unbelievers the peace I know in my walk with Jesus.
Do I shy away from telling the truth? Absolutely not. I was able to speak truth to someone while on my trip. It didn’t seem to do much good, but there’s no way I can know the outcome or how the Spirit might work in the hardened heart beating in that unsaved soul. What I do know is this: That person saw me as someone who came in peace, someone who came in love. I know those two things were more faithful witnesses and landed a more solid impact than two barrels would have.
The holiday will soon pass, and I will cock my gun and begin to fire, reload, and fire again. When I do, I need to ensure others see Him in me even when I do hit them with the impact of the hard truth of where we are on the kingdom calendar. Will you pray that for me and for you? We are of no use to the kingdom if we present ourselves as ambassadors of this world. While speaking to a Christian group in Minnesota last week, I told them something I’ve found as a sad truth these past years. Christians often give Christians a bad name. I know I have. I’m sure you have. May we no longer be any witness but one who bears witness to the real Jesus, the One who loves enough to come, to die, and to rescue.
Blessings to you this Christmas. Fix your eyes on Jesus, knowing His eyes are fixed on you.