Isaiah 9:6-7: For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.
JESUS, the SON of GOD, is our HOPE, our PROMISE, our SAVIOR, our LORD, our KING, and like Him, GOD the FATHER CALLED and CREATED us to be UNCOMMON; He CHOSE and APPOINTED us for GREAT, EXTRAORDINARY things for His glory and honor.
He called us from different races and nations, backgrounds and ages, out of our complacency, our comfort zones—out of our fears, doubts, insecurities, pride—into a life of service, giving, and forgiving, sharing and helping, comforting and encouraging, loving and listening, sowing and reaping, fasting and praying, and our lives are measured not according to our standard or in comparison to others but according to GOD’s STANDARD, for He searches our hearts and knows the truth of who we are, what we really stand for and believe in, and truly OUR CHARACTER is who we are in private, when we think no one’s watching; OUR REPUTATION is who other people think we are, what we lead them to believe; OUR CHARACTER is what JESUS, GOD says about us on JUDGMENT DAY; OUR REPUTATION is what a minister, other people say about us on our MEMORIAL DAY, and this is the truth, the only words that matter about us in the end are GOD’s WORDS, because they will determine WHERE and HOW we spend eternity.
And this is the heart of the situation: EACH LIFE is a gift, and the choices we make today matter, especially in relation to GOD, and the greatest Gift for Christmas is JESUS, the best presents for New Year’s, His Presence: GOD’s, because our lives are better lived and spent with GOD than without Him.
And here’s the truth in GOD's WORD: GOD made us FOR LOVING and FOR GIVING, and a WONDERFUL LIFE in GOD’s eyes is one lived with MEANING and PURPOSE, WELL-LIVED and WELL-SPENT with JESUS, GOD—one of SERVICE, given cheerfully and selflessly for others; one of LOVE, poured out as a drink for others to consume; one of COMPASSION, helping those less fortunate—those widowed, orphaned, homeless, or in greater need; one of SURRENDER, SACRIFICE, decreasing the desires of Self to offer precious time, money, advice, encouragement, food, shelter, or protection; one of GOODNESS, full of GIVING, sharing the best that dwells within, using one’s time, talent, and treasures for the glory, honor, and purpose of GOD; one daily bearing the FRUIT of the SPIRIT (love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, kindness, self-control); one of FORGIVENESS, canceling the debts of others and choosing to remember their sins and mistakes no more; one of FRIENDLINESS, HOSPITALITY, inviting others inside the sanctuary of that heart, that home, that family, or that life; one of PEACE, living in the blessing, abundance, and joy of the LORD; one of PRAISE and WORSHIP, with a heart of devotion; one of THANKSGIVING, giving reverence to the ONE from whom all life and blessings flow; and one of FASTING and PRAYER, drawing near to GOD, conversing with Him, and hearing Him speak in that still, small voice, for only GOD knows the plans He has for us, plans to prosper us and not harm us, plans to give us hope and a future, and only GOD knows where we're supposed to be and what we're supposed to be doing with our lives. So, maybe we should trust Him to lead us--guide us--to the right place at the right time in the right way.
After all, IN HEAVEN, ON EARTH, that’s a wonderful life, and that’s really the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE, which is JESUS CHRIST—our Savior, our Lord, our King—and though, in the movie It’s a Wonderful Life, bells ring when an angel receives its wings, in heaven, there is rejoicing when one lost soul is saved and enters the Family and Kingdom of GOD. So, what better life can we dream of than this—one where there’s a chorus in heaven rejoicing over us when we accept CHRIST JESUS as our LORD and SAVIOR, and one in which we finally hear JESUS, the RIGHTEOUS JUDGE, saying in the end, “Well done, my good and faithful servant. Well done”?