Several of the most beneficial conversations that I have ever had took place with the same person. I was thinking back to one of them recently, and because it relates to the coming Christmas season, I wanted to share it with you too.
When I was 18, I enrolled in college at Columbia International University in South Carolina. That year, my freshman year, I was introduced to my academic adviser. Her name is Dr. Cooper, and even though I only had one class with her as a professor, she would end up teaching me more than most people I’ve ever met. Most of you know this, but in September of 2013 I became very sick and had to withdraw from CIU. The particular conversation I’m thinking of happened right before I withdrew from school.
I walked into Dr. Cooper’s office one day in early September to tell her that I was going home to have some tests done, and that I would be missing some class. She asked me to sit and tell her what was going on, so I did. She told me that she would take care of my assignments, and then she said this to me:
“You know, Mitch, in the big picture this will pass quickly. It’s a unique season, and the Lord will teach you through it. Besides, the good news is that your identity isn’t found in your health. It’s found in Jesus. You know why you don’t have to worry, right?
I knew where she was headed, but I wanted to hear her answer, so I replied “Yes. Why?”
She simply smiled at me and said “Because Christ has come.”
It was a truth that struck me then, and it still astounds me now. As the Christmas season approaches, that fact is in the public eye, knowingly or not. Jesus has in fact come for us! And that’s exactly what we celebrate. Since that conversation took place, I’ve had some time to think upon it. The fact of the matter is that our entire identity hinges on this truth. Have you ever thought about that? The implications that this statement has are massive for the Christian. All of the things that Bible says about our identity are founded in the fact that Christ has come for us:
You are saved from your sins because Christ has come. (Matthew 1:21)
You are a child of God because Christ has come. (Ephesians 1:5; 1 John 3:1-2)
You are accepted because Christ has come. (Galatians 3:27-28)
You are chosen because Christ has come. (1 Peter 2:9)
You are made new because Christ has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
You are forgiven because Christ has come. (Ephesians 1:7)
You are loved because Christ has come. (Romans 5:8)
You have life because Christ has come. (John 6:35)
With the incredible event of Christmas approaching, let’s think on these truths. I’m reminded of a verse from my favorite Christmas hymn:
O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.
Our Savior has come to save us, and that is truly a reason to celebrate. Merry Christmas to you, friend.
Grace and Peace,