Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
I was asked recently if it is hard each year at Christmastime thinking of new things to preach on. The short answer to that question is “yes:” the basic Christmas story has not changed a bit. The challenge I face each year is to take the same ol’ story, the birth of our Savior, God becoming human, and somehow put a fresh face on it. But isn’t that the same challenge that each of us has each day: to make our “story” fresh? Our basic testimony, or ‘story,’ remains the same: God opened our hearts and our minds to accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, and to receive His gift of eternal, abundant life. The basic storyline hasn’t changed. As with me and my sermons at Christmastime, the challenge for each of us, especially those of us who have been followers of Jesus for a while, is to make our relationship with Jesus fresh and new each day. Lamentations tells us that God does His part: His mercies are “new every morning.” Are we offering ourselves to Him afresh each morning? Are we expecting, looking for those new mercies today? How current is your ‘story,’ your relationship with your God? Let’s not allow our ‘story’ to sound more like ancient history: speaking of God’s mercies and grace in years gone by. Let’s make sure there’s a ‘right now’ piece to our story, as we pour out our concerns to Him in prayer; as we offer ourselves to Him today; and as we look for His presence, His ‘new mercies’ throughout the day. One final thought: don’t keep your ‘story’ to yourself: make sure you tell someone about God’s mercies today. Both they and you will be blessed as you do! Merry Christmas!