A Love you can't Escape at Christmas time

I wrote this when I lived in England sometime around 2010 and wanted to re-release it because it is always good to be reminded of such a relentless and all consuming love freely accessible to us today. Be blessed with a fresh baptism of the Father's love...

This is a picture of my friend Craig holding his newborn baby who came into the world just 5 days before this shot was taken. For me this is such a beautiful reminder for Christmas on two different levels. First, it reminds me how Jesus obediently chose to leave the perfect union He had with the Father for the sole purpose of living a life He knew would be filled with suffering. Regardless of the risks He would have to take, Jesus chose to come, not as the victorious King, but rather as a completely vulnerable and dependent baby.  He did this because of such an intense and amazing love for each one of us.

Can you believe that someone would knowingly engage in a life that would be filled with suffering all because of the joy that would one day be set before Him? This joy of knowing us and loving us was greater than the pain (Hebrews 12). I am awe struck at Jesus’ relentless passion and pursuit of our hearts at any cost, in fact, at all costs. Such perfect love pursues us today, even when we feel lonely and rejected and unwanted. Let us remember the extreme and ultimate journey Jesus embarked on in our behalf, for the purpose of knowing us and inviting us into the immense measure of love found in Him.

On the other level, this picture also reminds me of God the Father’s love. It is easy to see that in the father’s eyes, his son can do no wrong. He is loved perfectly exactly how he is. Not only did God the Father send His son as a baby into this world, but He did it so that we could have relationship with Him. And the beautiful thing is, just as my friend Craig is adoring his baby, so God the Father adores us, exactly as we are. We don’t have to do a thing to earn His love. We don’t have to be good enough, pure enough, righteous enough, or do enough good works, but He loves us just exactly the way we are here and now, today in this moment. And the beautiful thing is, this will never change. I know many of us already know these facts but I also understand that sometimes it is the hardest thing to simply receive this great big love.

Let us take even 5 minutes today to stop and picture ourselves as the child in the Father’s arms and simply receive the acceptance, delight, and joy that emanates from His face onto us, His beloved children. May the Holy Spirit still our lives and open our hearts to receive an increased measure of the Father’s love. May each one of us be blessed this Christmas season and be reminded of the intense, persistent, and passionate love that has been demonstrated on our behalf.

For those hungrier still, there is another gift that is also freely available to those who want to open and receive it…Check out "A New kind of Christmas Present"to learn more.

Much love and peace to each of you during this season,