“You love Him, though you have not seen Him. And though not seeing Him now, you believe in Him and rejoice with inexpressible and glorious joy, because you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:8-9
For years one of my favorite sayings was, “I’ll believe it when I see it!” I was one of those people who would only believe something to be true if I could see it with my own two eyes. I guess in a lot of ways I still am that way. I want to see the evidence. I want proof. I want to know with certainty that something is true before I believe it. I know that is more than a little arrogant, but I didn’t know that until I began to believe. You see, so often we think that seeing is believing, and for many things that may be true. However, when it comes to our relationship with God, believing really is seeing. Some things you cannot prove with math, science, or video. I cannot physically prove that God has worked in my life, but you will not find anyone who knows me who doubts that He has. Some things you have to believe before you can see.
The people to whom Peter was writing had not seen Jesus before He was crucified. They had never heard His laugh. They had never seen His smile. Even though they had never personally seen Him, they had believed in Him and were living in relationship with Him. Because of their faith in Jesus, their lives were filled with joy because they knew the truth of God’s love for them. So many people will try to make today about a jolly, and large, old elf and a bunch of flying reindeer. There is not anything wrong with those things, but this night is really about the birth of our Savior. It is about the arrival of God with us. It is about a baby in a manger. You and I certainly never saw Jesus in that manger, but the only way we can experience true joy this season is to trust and believe that He really was there. True joy comes from believing, not necessarily from seeing.
How can you remain focused on Jesus this Christmas Eve?
How can you tell others about the real reason we celebrate Christmas?