"The purpose of this blog is to share my journey from Head to Heart, and hopefully inspire others not to miss the Sunset moments in their lives. As the truth of God's love, makes way from head to heart- it makes it possible to embrace the Sunsets in our lives!" -TJ Ellis
Is Christmas really over? Sure the presents were opened Our bank accounts deems it is so. The tree will come down soon. The baking stopped. The stores stopped playing carols. The excess gluttony hopefully is slowing down. In a traditional commercial sense, yWe are done with Christmas and entered into2017. While we won't see Christmas themes until October of next year, which by the way, is too early in my opinion. Like me, I wonder if you need to be reminded the life-changing truth of Christmas does not end after December Twenty-Fith. “Look! The virgin will conceive a child!
She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’Matthew 1:23
What if we opened our presents, but never took these out of the boxes these came in? What good would that do any of us? What an insult to the gift giver. Many of us do this very thing, with God. We are more than willing to celebrate a baby in a stable, but beyond this, we are all done with Christmas aren't, we? We only unwrap the gift just enough to get the warm fuzzy feeling inside. It never seems to get us through the rest of the coming year does it? Sometimes we are eager to open the gift of Christ's, birth, but we refuse to open the rest of the gift completely. Either, we are too prideful to accept that this baby was not just a baby, He came to fulfill the greatest need of humanity. He came in flesh, to recuse people from isolation and Separation from the Living God. His name is Jesus and He is willing to be Immanuel God with us. He desired to be with us, so much that He gave his life through death upon a cross for us. The real gift is, though He died, He didn't stay dead. I don't only mean that Jesus died universally for all. He also died personally for each. It is the personal part we need the most. We are too busy to live in the reality that God is with us in the ordinary. He is willing and desires to be with us, in the highs, lows, and in-betweens. In October, I faced an unexpected trial that knocked me to the ground emotionally and spiritually. For a short time, I doubted I could recover from it. It seemed to come out of the blue, but in hindsight, I can now see the storm had not been swirling out of nowhere. Before it actually hit harder, than I ever dreamed. Conditions set the stage for such a storm. In that storm, I heard something, and at the risk of sounding dramatic, I know I will never forget that moment. That moment I know God, whispered to me, "Teej I'm with you in this, and I WILL get you through this. " "I WILL NOT AND I HAVE NOT LEFT YOU. JUST LET ME LOVE YOU I knew in that moment, I would be ok.
Sometimes we don't unwrap the gift because of unworthiness. In reality, though what if we redirected our focus on the fact God went to such an extreme to declare our value, wouldn't that bring greater joy and glory to God? Let me allow this to ruminate a little. Unworthy has its place, but if we dwell in unworthiness too long, in my case, years, then I miss the beautiful truth of the Gospel. As I finish writing, it is the three days into 2017, and the theme seems to be living Hope filled in the awareness of the presence of God! How would you and I live more fully if we lived with the awareness and expectation of God's Hope Filling presence in our lives? Don"t miss your Sunset in 2017. Action Step: Ask God to make us aware of his presence, in the hardest moments of our day. Then, let' us Celebrate and thank God for being "with you and me