From the inspiring fine art photography of Mark Mabry...real people bring history to life.
"A baby in a manger on a silent night. Though her conception was immaculate and her delivery heralded by angels, even Mary would say that the story of Christmas is so much more than a baby.
Here’s the miracle of Christmas – Immanuel – God with us.
Too many Christians have convinced themselves and the world that God is a high and holy Master perturbed at and separate from our sin-fraught lifestyle. The more they act in accordance with His commands and ways, the more pleased He is and nearer He draws.
This belief system enslaves people to God only working in them and through them when they are “getting it right”. When we slip or fail, God is disappointed and moves away until we repent. Because God is holy, by nature He cannot associate with sin.
This heartbreaking belief is so contrary to the heart of the Father. We know this because when few were calling out for Him, while we were yet sinners, Christ came and died for the ungodly.
A good father doesn’t pull away from his failing or erring child. Instead, he comes to his child, making all he has and is available to him. Even if the child willfully rebels and runs away, the father is in loving and expectant anticipation of his return.
How much more is He who is our perfect heavenly Father? It is His kindness that leads to repentance. The very message of Christmas is not only His kindness, but His unfailing love for man. No matter how wicked, no matter how repeated our poor choices, His love and grace is continually poured upon us.
How else would we turn from our wicked ways? If He were to only be near when we are “good”, what power would be available for us to change? Our flesh cannot defeat our flesh. It can only be His ever-present Spirit empowering us to overcome.
This Christmas, be aware of the greatness of this simple truth – God is with you. Even better, the biblical reality is that we are in Him and He is in us. You just can’t get any closer.
Oh, be amazed and sing, all you peoples. Be joyful and triumphant. For the Lord, the God of heaven and earth, has come. And, He will never leave you or forsake you." -Mark Durniak
Joy to the world!