However, the release of my words has an enemy. He would like to silence my words and me altogether. Since I've been writing publicly my life circumstances have been even harder than before. I have to believe these two things are directly related.
I was reminded of this as I read this in a devotion:
"If we learn to worship God in the trying circumstances, He will alter them in two seconds when He chooses."
I just finished a study on the book of Daniel in the Bible. Daniel was such a man as this. He was taken captive into Babylon (present day Turkey), as a teenager and no matter what they did to him, he never forsook God. They tried every means possible to provoke him into denying the one true God of heaven and earth. God saw his humility and faithful heart and used him to prophecy the rise and fall of world empires and the final kingdom of Jesus Christ. Daniel was highly favored and it began because he loved God more than he loved himself. He trusted God and was faithful to Him no matter what. Oh, to be a Daniel. That is my heart's desire.
So, back to my original point. The enemy doesn't want me to write. I don't say this because I'm better than, or less than another writer. He just knows how to attack me. He knows how to steal my joy and this is my personal demon. We all have them if we claim Christ. This is one of the ways I've found to share my faith openly, words of hope to a world who needs to know a Savior who loves them.
My prayer for you this Christmas is for you to be a Daniel in the coming year.
May you find joy that causes you to worship from a heart of love, as Daniel did. He was stripped of everything he knew, his people, his culture, even his identity, and yet, he never forgot His God.
People will come and go. They will disappoint and fail us. It is human nature. But God will never fail. It's not in His nature. He cannot. He is faithful and will never leave us.
Christmas is a time of nostalgia for many. As adults, we try to emulate our childhood Christmases and give our children the best of everything. We have images of snow covered villages and sleigh bells ringing, sweet families going together to cut trees, hot cocoa by a roaring fire. But, it may not be like this for everyone. Christmas can also be time of sadness if we get lost in the trappings of the world's version of Christmas. Jesus is Christmas and He is the only reason I celebrate.
Our present will never be able to compete with our past so let it go. Let the memories stay enshrined where they are. Pay tribute to them, share them during family celebrations so they will not be forgotten, but don't worship them.
We have a Savior who came for the purpose of redemption. He's waiting, not under a tree, or in a manger...not even on a cross. He's risen, and waiting for a glance from His father. Let's worship Him this Christmas and sing from a heart of gratitude. Your joy for Christmas, and all things hoped for will be found in Him!