To Live and To Die

“…to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21, NIV). In his bestselling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, author Stephen R. Covey offers several best practices of leadership. Principles such as “Be Proactive”, “Begin With the End in Mind”, and “Sharpen the Saw” instruct the reader on how to excel inContinue reading “To Live and To Die”

The Characters of Christmas: Jesus

“…when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman…” (Galatians 4:4, NIV). Of all the players in the Christmas story, Jesus takes top billing. He is Immanuel – God With Us, the Savior given for all mankind. It seemed such a passive act, simply being birthed into the world.Continue reading “The Characters of Christmas: Jesus”

The Characters of Christmas: Herod and the Magi

“(Herod) sent (the Magi) to Bethlehem and said, ‘Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him’” (Matthew 2:8, NIV). The Biblical writers of the Christmas narrative offer a sharp contrast between those who would honor the newborn JesusContinue reading “The Characters of Christmas: Herod and the Magi”

The Characters of Christmas: Joseph

“…an angel of the Lord appeared to (Joseph) in a dream and said, ‘…do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit’” (Matthew 1:20, NIV). The phrase “a chip off the old block” seems fitting when it comes to Jesus and hisContinue reading “The Characters of Christmas: Joseph”

The Characters of Christmas: The Angel

“…the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord’” (Luke 2:10-11, NIV). What an awesome and terrifying sight it must have beenContinue reading “The Characters of Christmas: The Angel”

The Characters of Christmas: Mary

“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart” (Luke 2:19, NIV). There are so many things for a new mother to treasure concerning her child. There are the firsts – the first sound her baby makes (even if it’s crying), the first moment her newborn gazes into her eyes, theContinue reading “The Characters of Christmas: Mary”

The Characters of Christmas: The Bethlehem Shepherds

“‘This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger’” (Luke 2:12, NIV). I find it ironic that a few lowly shepherds were the first to hear of Jesus’ birth. Shepherds were hardly included in the upper crust of society. In fact, they were despisedContinue reading “The Characters of Christmas: The Bethlehem Shepherds”