Theme: Someone to Believe In.
I am glad I got to believe in Santa because as you grow older you realize the wonder of belief is rare. As Jerry Maguire said, "We live in a cynical world, a cynical world, and we work in a business of tough competitors." The tough competitors are competing to be our god. Let's face it, we were made to believe. Do you believe me? If we were not made to believe, then why are billions spent to make us believe? According to Forbes, the brand value of Apple is $241.2B, Google 207.5B, and Microsoft a measly 162.9B. Amazon and Facebook round off the top five influencers, all technology by the way, with Coca-Cola coming in sixth place as the first non-tech entity (64.4B). By the way, we all know Coca-Cola has the best Holiday commercials! But all of these competitors want one thing, for us to believe their product is the one we should buy and from the looks of it, they are doing a pretty good job.
As a pastor in a cynical world of tough competitors, how do you convince people to choose Jesus Christ? How do you get people to keep Jesus at the center of Christmas? How do you sway people to have no other gods before the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob?
This past Sunday I tried to point people to the one gift that has been around longer than any of the aforementioned companies, the Bible. People can say what they want about it, but it has passed the test of time and will be here long after Apple, Google, and Microsoft are gone (I know that is hard to imagine but they will be gone one day). At the same time, despite the Bible's length of stay, how do you think most would answer this question, "What would you rather do, play with an iPad, XBOX, or read the Bible?" See, we do live in a world of tough competitors!
I am not saying there is anything wrong with an iPad or XBOX at all. I have both, well actually my wife has an iPad and I have a PS4, but you get the point. But I will say if we are not reading the Bible, it's going to be hard to believe. It's going to be hard to have the power of God at work in our lives. It's going to be hard to experience His presence and leading in life. It's going to be hard not to worry and fret. It's going to be hard to have peace. It's going to be hard to not let other gods get in front of God. Because faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ. So if you want to read about the birth of Jesus Christ, Matthew and Luke give accounts of it. Mark and John do not, but they tell about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Yesterday, I issued a call, a call to read one chapter of John's Gospel for the next 21 days. Why? Because I want to point people to the One who Christmas is all about, Jesus Christ. I want people to experience the wonder of the Son of God. I want people to believe in His Name. And the best way for that to happen is to read the inspired word of God. I am glad I have gotten to believe in Jesus Christ because as you grow older you realize the wonder of belief is rare.
Scripture: Romans 10:17 (NLT)
So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.
Prayer: Someone to Believe In.
“Heavenly Father, faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ. In this Christmas Season, I want to read about Jesus Christ. Thank you for the Bible. Thank you that we live in a land where it is not a crime to have a Bible. Thank you that we have complete access to the word of God. I confess I have taken the Bible for granted. I confess I have way more screen time than Bible time. I confess I have lost some spiritual power in my life because I have not read your inspired word. Give me a fresh eyes and an open heart to read your word. And as I read your word, may it read me. I was made to believe and I want my belief to be placed in one person, Jesus Christ. Amen."