What Jesus Wants This Christmas
“What do you want for your birthday?”
Have you ever asked someone this question? Maybe you have been asked this question by someone before too. It is rather usual we ask this when we are thinking of a gift for a friend’s or family member’s birthday.
Christmas is about a week away. Christmas. A season where we especially remember and joyously celebrate the birth of Jesus.
Today, as I spend time with God, I decide not to ask God for what I think I want and need. I decide not to cry out to God with all my pleas. Instead, I choose to simply be still and quiet to wait on the Lord to reveal to me what He wants to show me today.
As I seek God and pray in the Spirit, I am led to ask God, “Lord Jesus, what do you want from me this Christmas?”
I am somewhat startled at this, because I do not remember ever asking this in my entire faith journey.
I continue to wait on the Lord to lead me to His response to that question.
God leads me to His Word in Romans 12:1 (ERV), where Apostle Paul says,
“So I beg you, brothers and sisters, because of the great mercy God has shown us, offer your lives as a living sacrifice to Him – an offering that is only for God and pleasing to Him. Considering what He has done, it is only right that you should worship Him in this way.”
I begin to meditate on this Word from God. For I want to better understand what it is that Jesus wants me to do or give this Christmas.
God begins to reveal to me sobering insights. Jesus wants me to offer my life to Him, not because of any other thing, but because of the great love and mercy He already has shown. I need to re-align my perspective and motive this season. I may have carelessly allowed measurable outcomes to be steering my mind and emotion lately. When outcomes of my serving are not as I have expected, I feel disappointed on good days, and on worse days, I actually feel angry. Jesus wants me in this Christmas season, to return to serving Him with a pure and thankful heart, offering my life to Him simply because He already has given His everything to me.
God says “offer your lives” and in another Bible translation, it says “present your lives”. In the past when I read this Bible verse, I often understood it as surrendering and yielding myself to God. This is correct, of course. But today, God gives me a glimpse to another facet. ‘Offer my life’, ‘present my life’ – this implies a willing, happy and glad offering of myself. This Christmas, God reminds me to be willingly and joyously giving my whole life to Him. Not with reluctance, grudges nor self-agenda.
Jesus wants me to offer my life as “a living sacrifice to Him – an offering that is only for God and pleasing to Him.”
I think sacrifice has little meaning in our modern age. Children think not playing computer games for a day is a remarkable sacrifice. Grown-ups think not eating chocolate for a week is an enormous sacrifice. Jesus gave up and sacrificed His everything for us. His sacrifice is total and complete and eternal. Nothing from Him is withheld.
This is what Jesus wants from me this Christmas. He wants my total and complete surrender to Him in every thing, every place and every moment. He wants my life to be a “living sacrifice” – active, ongoing, life-giving. This speaks to me very much. Sometimes while I serve God’s purpose in action, the very act itself may not be of life and hence, not life-giving. Jesus wants me to serve Him not by my own strength, but by depending on the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. Jesus wants me to be a living sacrifice, not merely do works of sacrifice.
I thank God for His Word and revelation to me. I understand now what Jesus wants from me this Christmas. As the last line of Romans 12:1 says, considering what He has done, it is only right that I should worship Him in this way.
What does Jesus want from you this Christmas? I believe when you still your heart at this moment, God too has a message for you from what He has shown me today. As the Holy Spirit speaks to you, make a decision to give Jesus what He wants from you this Christmas. Have a Merry and Blessed Christmas.
Let us pray together.
“Dear God, I thank You that Your Word is powerful, active and life-giving. Through Your Word, I receive life and empowerment, thereby being able to give life to empower others. I offer my life to You as a living sacrifice, O Lord. Let every aspect of my life be pleasing to You and serving Your Kingdom purpose. Yes, Father, for all the grace and mercy You have shown me, it is only right I worship You and serve You in this way. As I look forward to the coming of Christmas, I am coming to You afresh with all my heart, mind, soul and strength. I worship You, O God, all the days of my life. In Jesus’ Name, I pray. Amen.”