Sunday, December 25, 2016

The Name of Jesus

"Christmas forces people to face the reality of what they believe. If your belief isn't changing your life, then is it really belief at all?"

This question was posed to us as we sat in church last weekend. Talk about causing someone to think hard about what it is they believe...

Maybe you know what you believe in your head, but oftentimes have difficulty connecting it to your heart day in and day out. Maybe you don't know what you believe. Maybe you've been hurt by the church and people who claim to be Christians.  But here is the beautiful truth: God is not afraid of our doubts and questions, no matter where we fall on the spectrum.

Here is what I know I believe:
I believe is that the name of Jesus has the power to save, heal, restore, and deliver.
I believe that Jesus has no rival, no equal, and He reigns now and forever.
I believe that the name of Jesus brings peace to every situation, calms my heart when I'm stressed, and helps me dwell on truth.

Do these truths make it from my head to my heart every day? No. But the good news is that my inability to recognize those truths doesn't nullify the fact that Jesus is still all of those things.

The song "What a Beautiful Name" is jam-packed with truths about who Jesus is and the magnitude of what His name embodies that help remind me of what I believe..

"What a beautiful name it is, the name of Jesus Christ my King."

Beauty has to do with the things that are appealing or attractive to us. God is the epitome and essence of perfection and the most beautiful being in the whole universe. Think about the most beautiful thing your eyes have seen on this earth... snow capped mountains, the power of waves crashing on a shoreline, the smile of a child on Christmas morning, the most stunning sunset.. all things find their source of beauty in Him. And while we find beauty in all of these things, it is Jesus' characteristics and works and attributes that make him the most beautiful: his goodness, kindness, compassion, love... the way he relentlessly seeks out the people the world says are unlovable and irredeemable.

"What a wonderful name it is, the name of Jesus my King."

The name of Jesus has the ability to invoke wonder. We are given the opportunity and ability to live as new creations in Christ.... my tiny brain can hardly begin to wrap itself around that concept. It truly is amazing beyond comprehension!! We are walking miracles.

It is so easy to go through the motions. "Yes, Jesus died for me and forgave all of my sins. Yes, he rose from the dead to give me life. Yes, he is my everything" and the list goes on... but I never want to lose my wonder at the work that Jesus has done and is continuing to do in my life, in the lives of the people around me and the lives of people around the world.

"What a powerful name it is, the name of Jesus."

The words we speak have power. The most powerful word we could ever speak is the name of Jesus. The name of Jesus literally means, "God saves".. and not just as our Redeemer, but as our Protector, Comforter, Guide, Healer and the One who sets us free. The power of his name creates miracles, brings peace to any circumstance, protects from harm, heals the blind, makes the deaf to hear and sets people free from the things that burden and enslave them.

Praise be to the One who came to earth in the form of a baby, laid out in a dirty manger so the lowliest of us could have access to Him and be reconciled to Him forever. He is the God of hope and healing. The God who can breathe fresh life into anyone or anything. The One who is faithful to be all He says He is.

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