Life & Legacy: Christmas – a beacon of strength by Kim Anthony

I saw a banner the other day which said, “Finish 2020 Strong!.” 2020 has been a year where our strength has been tested. Our mental, emotional, and for some even our financial strength has been tested.

In the biblical narrative there is the story of a man named Joshua who took on the leadership of his country from a much older, wiser Moses. I imagine it would have been a scary time, a time of uncertainty, and perhaps a feeling of being in-over-his-head. So what was the instruction God gave Joshua?

Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.
Joshua 1:7

The instruction was simple. Be strong and courageous, obey the instructions for life, and you’ll be successful. In other words, do what is right and it’ll be ok, better than ok – you’ll succeed. Simples…

The idea that our circumstances are the making of our own choices can be a hard pill to swallow. If this is true we can’t blame our lack of resources, government policies, or even covid. It comes down to me – what am I doing with what I have been given? We all know this to be true at some level. This is a heavy burden. It’s much easier to blame someone or something…

It’s against the darkened backdrop of a stark reality where Christmas shines as a beacon of light. The promise of a saviour – someone who would intervene on our behalf. One who would do what was right when we couldn’t and take the burden of our failure. It is in the Christ where the Christian ideas of grace, hope, redemption, and forgiveness are formed. A Christian’s hope is not in being able to live perfectly but in Christ who has lived a perfect life and offered us his reward through faith.

This year we’ve all been tested. More than likely we would have found ourselves wanting. In Christ, we find strength to pursue a better tomorrow despite past failures.

Christmas is a celebration of new beginnings and the promise of a new day of hope – all in the form of a baby who would live a life and make a sacrifice we never could. Merry Christmas!

Kim Anthony is the Pastor of Life&Legacy Church at Hillcrest. Visit lifeandlegacy.church for more ways to connect.

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