“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son, from the Father.” -John 1:14
I go to a Bible college, Lancaster Bible College that is. It takes about five minutes to walk from one end of the campus to the other. It is a very small campus, which makes it easy for everyone to know everyone. It is great; everyone knows everything about everyone. Or do they? It is easy for us to make that assumption.
Knowing a person is more than just knowing their name. It has to do with time; time being invested in the relationships. Getting to know people means learning people’s stories, knowing where they come from, knowing what makes them happy, sad, angry, and fearful. Those are just a few examples.
As I think about the people that I am thankful for who want to get to know me, I can’t help but think about Jesus. We serve a God who knows us. Psalm 44:21 says, “would not God discover this, for he knows the secrets of the heart.” God knows everything about us, and God loved us enough to send his Son to break the divide that sin created. Because of that grace we can know him also. As John says in his gospel, Jesus came to earth, so that we could come to know God. How great is that?!
That is part of the message of the babe in the manger. At Christmas we forget this. We tend to just read the story of his birth, and we neglect to remember that he did live 33 years after that. So let’s go beyond the story of the manger this Christmas and look at how he lived for those 33 years. What made him happy? What made him sad? What made him angry? How did he react in certain situations? What was his life like for all of those years?
In order to know people we can’t just know about the story of when they were born. We need to get to know their whole story. Knowing them means knowing how they do life. What makes them happy, sad, angry, and what is their story? This is the same for our savior. In order to know him these are some of the things that we have to look into. So my challenge this Christmas for you and I is to dive into the other years of his life also.
I want you to know that I am striving to do this also. Part of the reason that I feel so inclined to write this is because the last couple weeks I have felt convicted. Finals, classes, and some other things were taking up so much of my time. I wasn’t in the Word. Now instead of dwelling on that, I want to look ahead and dive into the Word this Christmas. My prayer is that you and I would get to know our savior on a deeper level this season. I don’t want to let the craziness of preparing for Christmas get in the way. Besides, Christmas preparations are no excuse for not doing that. We can come up with all of the excuses we want for not reading His Word. The list is long. I have presents to buy. I have presents to wrap. I have cookies to make. I have cookies to eat. I have to put up the tree. I have to decorate the tree.
What is the point of Christmas if we are too busy to truly get to know Jesus? If we get all that stuff done, but don’t take the time to learn about Jesus, then we have done all of this preparing in vain.
Em Taylor has worked on summer staff and is a student at Lancaster Bible College.