Home For Christmas
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Lost and Found
Have you ever been lost? Maybe when you were a kid and in a store, or somewhere outside?
Can you remember finding your way back home - or finding your way back?
When I was really young I got lost in a shop in Birmingham and didn't know where my mum was. I was so relieved when I saw her and found her. It was an amazing feeling.
Another time, we were lost out in the mountains. We had to ask people where we were and then had to retrace our steps to find our way again. It was a big moment when we eventually realised where we were!
Jesus came to help the lost
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Jesus said this in Luke 19.10 - "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost."
The Son of Man is a name given to Jesus. What Jesus was saying is that even when people don't know it, he came into the world bringing the message that you only really find yourself and find your way home when you come to Jesus. Without Jesus, you're lost - just as people get lost when driving or in any other way. When you're lost, you need someone to help you find your way again. Jesus is saying to all of us that he is the way.
Whatever you are going through or however hopeless you think things may be, Jesus is always there saying to you, "I am the way. I can help you find your way. I'm hear so you don't have to be or feel lost any more."
This is why Jesus came into the world. He came to bring the message of hope and the message that he is the way. He is the only way. You can try all kinds of other things to cover up your loneliness or fear or anything else that hurts you. The message of Jesus is that only he can make things work out and bring hope.
Coming Home For Christmas
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Jesus came to seek out the lost
Luke 15.3-7 (Message version) - Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? When found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.
Here is the amazing thing about the Christmas story and the life of Jesus. Not only does Jesus help you find your way if you are feeling lost in life, he actively seeks out those who are lost so that he can help them.
Think about the fact that Jesus came into the world so that he could help people be free, find hope and find life. He could have refused. He could have stayed comfortable at home in heaven. But he didn't. He left heaven, came to earth, lived a perfect life, died on a cross so that people like you and me to be free.
Each person in the world was built for a friendship with God but people reject that offer, thinking that they know better and that life will be better without God. But everyone has a hole in their heart that only Jesus can fill. We were made by God to be friends with God. Anything less means we have to fill our lives with things that may seem like fun but actually destroy us physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. But God doesn't just leave us on our own. Jesus is always there, just one prayer away from helping you, reuniting you with God and finding a true family with other people who love God.
Today, God wants to welcome you 'home.' Christmas is a time when we often see those we love. But there is one who loves you more than you could ever know and this Christmas he invites you to 'come home.'
A Prayer of Commitment (this sourced from elsewhere, author unknown)
There are many ways that people can meet with Jesus and say yes to him in their life. Prayer is simply speaking to him from your heart. You don't have to say the right words but need to mean what you say in wanting Jesus to be at the centre of your life. In the Bible, people prayed all kinds of prayers. The thief who died next to Jesus on a cross just said, "Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!"
Here is an example prayer that everyone can say even if you believe in God or not:
"Dear Lord Jesus, I have heard that your love never fails, that you're willing to forgive, that you have power to heal.
I've heard that before I knew about you, you knew me, loved me and gave yourself for me.
Today I want to know and experience God's love for myself.
So I turn toward your kindness and forgiveness with my deepest needs and my deepest wounds.
I pray, Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me and forgive me.
Pour your healing love into my life and make me new. Show me the way to go and I will follow you."
If this is the first time you've prayed this kind of prayer it's worth telling someone that you've prayed this prayer.