I love Christmas cards. Especially the traditional kind.
Like a snow covered landscape, with a cozy cottage nestled in the woods. In the window you see the decorated tree. The smoke rising from the chimney tells you there’s a fire inside. You can almost feel the warmth; you can almost smell the gingerbread and pumpkin pie.
Or the scene with the rosy-cheeked carolers gathered on the front steps of a neighbor’s home. You can imagine how their angelic voices would fill the crisp winter air as they sing…
Silent night, holy night.
All is calm, all is bright…
When I see pictures such as these, I think: What a beautiful world to live in.
But that’s not the world where many find themselves today. Instead of peace and tranquility, they’re surrounded by heartache and pain, even darkness and despair. For many, the dream drawn on canvas seems forever out of reach.
While we hope for a world that we cannot create, we continue to live in a world we cannot escape.
This is why we need Jesus.
He came to change that which we cannot change for ourselves. He came to turn something ugly into something beautiful. He came to…
…comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion — to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. (Isaiah 61:2-3)
Oh, how I love to read these words.
Maybe today you see only ashes — but there is a crown of beauty waiting for you. The oil of gladness. A garment of praise.
The most idyllic scene you can imagine, he came to make real. Not just for a moment, captured in time, but for all eternity.