This Christmas season, we want to focus on the concept of Light. This theme is found in many places of the Bible, but none of these representations are more holy and significant than God’s gift to all of us in the birth of his one and only Son.
“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 1 But 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: 8–11
When Jesus was born, God sent an angel to declare the good news of the birth of the Messiah. How incredible is it that we have a God that would send his only Son to our world filled with darkness and pain, and give us the Light of the World to rescue us from sin? Jesus’ birth was a game-changer; this little baby in Bethlehem signified a hope that could wipe out the darkness that was plaguing the world.
We at Bayside intend to live like Jesus did, so we are constantly looking for opportunities to be a light in our communities. On a global scale, we support the rescue and rehabilitation of trafficked girls in Cambodia with Agape International Missions and we’re currently building them a school so that these rescued girls can get an education. We are also partnering with Compassion International in hopes of sponsoring every child we can in Burkina Faso, because with its staggering statistics for infant death, malnutrition and illiteracy and poverty rates. We know we can make a difference in these children’s lives. Locally, we’re continuing to plant churches in hopes of reaching more people and sharing the Word of God, and most notably we launched Bayside Folsom prison to spread the message of hope and encouragement to an entire population that most people forget about.
Why do we do this? Because Jesus calls us to be lights in the world so that we might bring salvation to the ends of the earth (Acts 13:47). We believe in following Jesus’ teachings on compassion, love, faith and good works to spread the news of his coming because we know we can all make a significant difference in our world through him.
So this holiday season, we invite you to be actively encouraged in this truth: that Jesus is the Light of the World, and we will celebrate his birth because it is with him that we are rescued from the darkness, and we will continue to bring light to those around us because he brought light to us.
No matter what your darkness looks like—whether that’s sickness, the terror in our world today, addiction, emotional pain, marital strife, loss or something else entirely—Jesus was born, God gave him to you and if we lean into him we can spread joy in our homes and all over the world because we know Jesus came and set us free!
This article originally appeared on the Bayside Church blog.