The Sparkle of Christmas
Posted on December 23, 2019 by Catey Stover in Victory Call
Noelle is a new Disney movie about the daughter of Santa. Her brother, Nick, was destined to become the new Santa, but he didn’t have the “sparkle”. He knew all there was to know about Santa, but he didn’t get it! Breaking the mold of a 2000-year old tradition, Noelle “sparkled,” and ultimately changed everyone’s preconceived notion of who the real Santa would be.
Noelle’s sparkle was the result of living out Christmas 24/7, by caring for others and putting other people above herself. Isn’t that what Christmas is all about?
Jesus came, forgoing the expression of His position as the God of the universe, humbling Himself as a servant, sacrificing Himself as the Lamb of God for the sins of the world, and offering eternal, abundant life both now and forevermore! [ii]Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
This incredible gift is for everyone who believes! Not just for those who have been “good”, but for everyone, no matter what a person has done!
The one stipulation is that you must believe. I don’t mean the belief of assenting to God’s reality, but one must truly believe, like the child who believes in Santa. To believe unto salvation is to completely trust that Jesus is who He says He is and did what only He could do. To know and understand that apart from Him, there is no hope for salvation. True belief can be compared to the small child who believes implicitly that Santa will deliver the longed-for gift on Christmas morning, and that apart from Santa, the gift is an impossible dream.
To believe in Jesus for salvation is to recognize that apart from God, we can never receive the gift of abundant and eternal life described in the Bible. To believe in Jesus is to repent (turn away) from who we are apart from Him – that is sinners who can never measure up to God’s standards. To believe in Jesus is to change directions, (turn) to God, to agree with Him. This kind of belief impacts who we are and everything we do because of WHO HE IS. The child believes Santa is watching every day – that Santa “sees when you are sleeping, knows when you’re awake, knows if you’ve been bad or good…” so the child acts differently. True belief in Jesus is believing that Jesus is changing you and bringing glory to God through your life. HE makes you different. He makes you a new creation![iii]
The difference between the child who tries to measure up by being good and the individual who believes in Jesus is the recognition that we can’t measure up to God’s standards by ourselves. The child acts differently because he believes Santa will reward him for being good. We act differently when God mysteriously changes who we are through the power of His Holy Spirit. As we immerse ourselves in His Word and follow Him in our daily lives, Jesus shines in us, making our lives to “sparkle” so that others may [iv]“see our good works and glorify our Father who is in heaven.”
Chambers writes that we must never substitute the [v]“power of the Gospel” with our “knowledge of the way of salvation” lest we “hinder the reality of redemption” in others. It is the “sparkle” of the Light of Jesus, the Light of the World, that causes people to recognize the power of the Gospel to transform lives.
[ii] II Corinthians 9:15 NASB
[iii] II Corinthians 5:17 NASB
[iv] Matthew 5:16 NASB
[v] Chambers, Oswald. My Utmost for His Highest (Updated for Today’s Language). “Not By Might Nor By Power” (December 7). Oswald Chambers Publications Association, Ltd. 1992.
Written by Kim Olachea: Kim Olachea served as a pastor’s wife for 35 years in NC, GA, and NJ. In 2018, she and her husband transitioned from local church ministry to serve full time with DisciplePath. Kim is an entrepreneur and the owner of Online Bookkeeping Solutions. She is a speaker, writer, and founder of ProverbWise and Pastors’ Wives, EveryDay Lives. She and her husband, Dr. Joe Olachea, lead teaching tours to Israel and Greece, with a unique emphasis on discipleship. Kim enjoys writing, reading, playing the piano, walking, and a few good days at the beach. Her most fulfilling roles include being the wife of Joe, mom to five adult children, and grandma to seven adorable, nearly perfect grandchildren. Joe and Kim are loving life in New Bern, NC
Think About This: “Peace is so important. It’s a gift God gives us, and it grows in us just like fruit grows on trees—with time and nurturing. The key to living in peace begins with pursuing God and the peace only He can give.” – Joyce Meyer
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the doctrinal and theological views held by America’s Keswick.