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We celebrate lots of different things in life, but at Christmas, we're preparing for Jesus—and
that's the same thing as
preparing for God. God is actually coming to us. Now that is something to celebrate. And
the Gospel of John makes that
very, very clear.
From The Turning Point
So what John's really getting at is this idea: when you see Jesus, you see God. So, let's take a
look at these verses
in chapter one that you're probably already very familiar, but let's remember them one more time.
Look at verse one: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
completely divine. Then skip down to verse twelve, “But to all who received him, who believed in
his name, he gave
power to become children of God.” So Jesus becomes the link between God and us. We believe in
Jesus, and he gives us
the power to become children of God. So he's fully divine, and he becomes the link.
Now look down at the one that I told you is my favorite verse (I hope you love as much as I do),
verse fourteen: “And
the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory
as of the only
begotten Son from the Father.” “The word became flesh,” so Jesus is the Word of God in verse one.
And in verse
fourteen, the Word becomes flesh and dwells among us. He's not only fully God, he's fully human.
That's what the
Incarnation is: God in the flesh.
And so then skip down to verse twenty-nine where we get to meet John the Baptist: “The next day,
John the Baptist saw
Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”
So when you see
Jesus, you see God. Verse one, he's fully divine. Verse twelve, he's the link between God and us.
Verse fourteen, he's
fully human. In verse twenty-nine, he's on a mission to take away the sin of the world.
Now turn with me to one other verse, 12:45: “And he who sees me, sees him who sent me.” In other
words, when you see
Jesus, you see God. So when we go through the Gospel, when we see Jesus at the wedding turning the
water into wine,
when we meet Nicodemus in chapter three, when we meet two women who have kind of lost their way,
when Jesus raises
Lazarus from the dead . . . that's God. When Jesus rehabilitates Peter, when he loves Mary his
mother, you see Jesus;
you see God.
So this 1:14, this key verse (my favorite verse, by the way), it really sets the stage: “The Word
became flesh and
dwelt among us.” God is literally entering the world. That's what we celebrate at Christmas.
At Christmas in our family, we celebrate our relationships with each other and our relationship with
Jesus. We have a
tradition we followed for decades that has truly transformed our family. It's a tradition of
honoring one another when
we exchange gifts. We take a couple of minutes to say to the person we're giving our gift to what
it is about them that
we truly love and what's special about them, and we honor them. It's a beautiful thing to watch.
Everybody has something they deserve to be honored for, and everybody needs to be told that they're
loved. If something
would ever happen to me or to my wife, Patty, we never have to worry about whether or not our kids
knew that we loved
them. And they never have to worry about whether or not we knew that they loved us, because we take
the time to honor
each other and to verbalize our love for one another. By honoring one another, we focus on the
relationships in our
life and the most important need that all of us have, which is to love and to be loved.
So what do you celebrate at Christmas?
Allen Hunt is a nationally known speaker, bestselling Catholic author, and
Dynamic Catholic’s Passion & Purpose for Marriage and Find Your Greatness events. He converted to Catholicism
serving as a mega-church pastor and has spent the last thirty years helping people and couples of all
ages encounter Jesus
and deepen their faith lives.
John Sherman, our director of development, hails from Chicago, Illinois, yet somehow loves the Cubs’
rival team, the
St. Louis Cardinals. John’s favorite activities are golfing and hiking (not necessarily at the same
time). Not long
ago, he hiked the Grand Canyon rim-to-rim in one day. He also recently hiked half the Camino.
When you encounter Jesus, you find God.
Read one of the three Christmas stories from the Gospels this week (Matthew 1:1–2:23,
Luke 1:1–2:40, or John 1:1–14).
God, help me to seek you and know you through Jesus.
Today’s video features excerpts from Session Two of The Turning Point: Eight
Encounters with Jesus That Will Change
Your Life (now available).
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