Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Twelve Days for Christmas: Day 5

Reference: Warren, Rick (2008). The Purpose of Christmas. Howard Books, pp. 41-50.

Today, we take an expanded look at the gift of salvation that Christmas brings. In The Purpose of Christmas, Warren writes,

“When people think of spiritual salvation, they often have a very narrow concept of it: they think that salvation is being saved from hell. But God had so much more in mind than just fire insurance when He sent Jesus to be our Savior” (p. 44).

Webster’s dictionary defines “salvation” as preservation from destruction or failure; deliverance from danger or difficulty. The word “save” is to rescue or deliver from danger or harm, to preserve or guard from injury, destruction or loss.

“I am my own worst enemy.” How often do we hear this; how often do we think it of ourselves? It is no secret that many (most, speaking for myself) of our troubles are of our own making. Even when other people, places and things create chaos in our lives, we make matters worse by the way we respond.

The apostle Paul described our problem perfectly: “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do, but what I hate is what I do . . . I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it (Romans 7: 15-20).

Sin is real, and I need to be preserved from its destruction. Every day. Salvation is not just a card to cash in at the gates to eternity. It is a tool for living every moment of every day. Through salvation, God chips away at our hearts of stone, molding us into the image of His Son. When we accept Christ as Savior, we give consent to the Sculptor to begin work with our rough materials. Through the ongoing work of salvation, God will use what we bring to create the masterpiece He knows is within us.

Christmas is for salvation.

May you feel His grace today,
Gail W.

The last Word:
In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day unto now, being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1: 3-6, NIV.


Denise said...

Praise God for His saving grace.

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Sorry that I've missed the beginning of this study. I haven't bought the book; no good reason, but will get a copy my next time out.

I am so thankful for my salvation. I see God's work in my life as ongoing and an intentional pilgrimage toward holiness. I'm not the person that I was, and this is a really good thing. I love growing up in Christ with every day.

Thanks for your heart, Gail. May God bless your Christmas with a rich sense of his presence and peace at every turn.

I'll try and get back over here each day!