Christmas Messages
December 23, 2009
Give of the best to the master

23.DEC.09

Christmas Message by Pastor Dermoth Baptiste Coordinator, Seventh-day Adventist Church

THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS and the season of giving are very much with us again. Matthew 2:11 records that the wise men, when they found Jesus Christ, “bowed down and worshipped Him and presented gifts to Him”. At this time of the year when there is so much buying and selling, giving and receiving, shopping and consuming, what are we really giving to the Lord?{{more}} Jesus is the greatest gift to humanity. He came in the fullness of time to represent God’s character to a self-centered, revolting world that is plunged into an abyss of greed, hostility, crime and pleasure seeking. The story of Christmas is the good news that God is not what the devil perceived Him to be; tyrannical, uncaring, oppressive and cruel, but rather loving, merciful, kind, compassionate, just and forgiving.

He showers His love daily upon His creation. He sends His rain upon the just and unjust. We breathe moment by moment His breath. Every morsel of bread we eat is stamped with His love. He protects us from the wiles of the enemy and He offers us salvation from sin and its degeneration. Jesus is constantly giving of Himself, because He doesn’t desire anyone to perish but that we should come to know Him as Lord and Saviour.

Like the magi, we need to present our gifts to the Lord today. If you are contemplating what kind, may I suggest the following:

(i) That in contrition of heart, we lay our all at the foot of the cross in complete obedience to His will.

(ii) That we give back our talents that we have been endowed with in loving service to humanity.

(iii) That we take time to know Him for ourselves by reading His love letter to us, the Bible, and spending quality time with Him in private devotion and corporate worship. Then there are those intangibles such as “giving in” at times for the sake of peace, or allowing others to win an argument every so often, which are essential elements of cherished human relationships to nurture

(iv) That we care for our bodies, by not misusing or abusing them with that which is harmful and injurious to healthy living, such as alcohol, drugs and illicit sex.

(v) That we give of our means and our services for the triumph of the gospel and the alleviation of suffering humanity.

May I also suggest that we spend more time with family and loved ones so as to foster family ties and engender values that will be lasting and meaningful. I encourage us this Christmas and always, to give of our best to the Master. Let us bow down and worship, “for greater love has no one than this, that He lay down His life for His friends.” John 15:13.

On behalf of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, I take this opportunity to wish the Government and people of our beloved land a blessed Christmas and a productive and fulfilling 2010. We do not know what the future has in store but we can trust the one who knows the future to take us safely through the unknown and untried days. May we adhere to the counsel of the wise man Solomon. “In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He will direct thy path.” Prov. 3:6.