The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned...For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this. Isaiah 9:2, 6-7
Sunday: A Great Light
Bible Reading: Isaiah 9:2-7
Jesse Tree Symbol: candle (go to Jesse Tree ornaments)
"Last year I had a dream.. I remember seeing a white bright light, as bright as the sun.. But the funny thing is it wasn't hurting my eyes at all!! I could look into this light with great comfort. The light warmed me with love and joy!! I felt happy!! Then appeared Jesus Christ he stood in the light wearing a long white robe. He glowed with light. He was holding a book in his hand and on the book stood a white dove. I felt so loved and like I didn't have a worry in the world. I felt joy, peace, happiness and so much
of love. I had so many questions to ask him but at that time I felt like I knew every answer to my every question. Jesus looked at me and then the dream faded away and I awoke to darkness. I am born into Hindu faith but all my life I has never felt that connection to the Hindi deities. My heart didn't feel like going into doing all the Hindu prayers. I have a Bible and my family knows I believe in Jesus Christ...I have asked Jesus Christ for forgiveness of my sins."
Those are the words of a young girl named Melisha who lives in South Africa. I know this because she wrote them to me last week. She was writing to me because I am an online missionary with the Campus Crusade outreach Global Media Outreach
Melisha has "seen a great light," just as Isaiah talks about. She was "walking in darkness," "living in the land of the shadow of death," but now "a light has dawned" for her. Now she knows who Jesus Christ is and has accepted Him as her Lord and Savior.
It is not easy. Her family is Hindu. Her brother is angry that she now worships Jesus. She does not have a car so can not go to a worship service this Sunday morning. But Melisha can worship Jesus in her heart. She can read her Bible. She can know Him as "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
Jesus came to Earth to bring light into this dark, dark world. He did this 2,000 years ago and He does it today, every moment, all over the world, into every heart that will accept Him.
May the lights of Christmas, this year, remind you of the child that was born to be the light of the world.
The above commentary is part of a 4-week Advent Reflection for the Jesse Tree. The Jesse Tree is similar to an advent calendar. Every day you will read a Bible passage to your child(ren), discuss what it means to them in personal terms and color an ornament to hang on your Jesse Tree. A fuller description of this can be found at The Jesse Tree
When you are finished today, you might want to discuss how Christmas is about giving much more than getting. One way that your family can give is through their daily prayers. This might be a good time to pray for a specific country or for a group of people who do not know about Jesus. Today, over 2 billion people, 1/3 of the earth's population, have never heard the Gospel message. They don't know about the way God provided for them through Himself as our ultimate sacrifice. They need our prayers.
Two great websites to help you do this are:
Operation World go to Featured Nation and click on Country Profile
Another way to give is by giving a gift to those, throughout the world, who have very little. It might be a chicken, or sheep or a goat...maybe you can help pay for the digging of a well or provide a sewing machine to a widow so she can provide for her family. There are many ways to help this Christmas. Visit Gospel for Asia and take a look at their Christmas Catalog.