What is Good News?
Being the youngest of eight, some of my earliest childhood memories of Christmas are the excitement of family arriving home for the holidays. Some of my older siblings were already off in Bible college or even married. I loved the excitement of playing hockey on our own outdoor rink (my mom was right in there with everyone), riding horses through the snow, endless Ping-Pong tournaments and board games. Always loud and competitive. Then at a certain point, my dad would take out the Bible and read the familiar Christmas story.
The angel’s visit, the divine birth, the shepherds in the field, and the pronouncement to some of Israel’s most overlooked people: “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is the Messiah, the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)
Good news (Gospel), great joy for all people. A Saviour, Messiah (expected Deliverer).
As a teen, I struggled a great deal. I wondered if God was good, and whether it even mattered that this Jesus came to earth. Good news for me was “We’re going skiing, or “Let’s go camping down at the river” or “There’s a party at ….”. Good news was anything fun and exciting to escape the fact that life is really hard.
On many levels I understand the struggle our students face. Life has often delivered some pretty tough blows but now, 30 years into my walk with Jesus, I can honestly say that I wouldn’t trade any fun experience for knowing personally my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. He truly is the best gift ever given. The greatest Treasure worth far more than anything this world can offer.
The good news of Christmas is not that a baby was born of mysterious circumstances, but that this Child was God in the flesh. He lived the perfect life I could never live, and died the death I deserved taking my punishment. By trusting in Him, I am freed from the penalty of my sin and the power of sin over me. I am freed to live, walking by the Spirit, and to serve in love and joy.
Our prayer for our students, their families, and for you is that you all will truly know this Jesus, and in the excitement of friends and family that we would all remember to stop and worship the King of kings and Lord of lords.
Thank you so much for caring, praying, and supporting us this past year. May God grant you His peace and joy this Christmas season and in the new year to come.
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