Read Romans 5:1-11
“We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise” (v. 2, msg).
By faith in Jesus Christ, we stand in the favor of God. Declared righteous because He loves us to the end. Proclaimed clean because Jesus stood in the way of God’s wrath when He hung on the cross. We are justified because of the faith God has granted. Whole and complete and at peace with God because of His great love for us.
What we have is no less than amazing. Paul wrote it to the Romans, but it rings true today.
I look at the story of my past and cringe at certain parts. Because there’s shame and pain and no-good rebellion. If not for God’s love, I don’t know where I’d be. But I can tell you where I wouldn’t be: in right-standing with God.
Without Jesus Christ, there’d be no favor or grace or hope of any real kind. Not for me or you or Billy Graham or Beth Moore. But when we trust Jesus to make us new, trust Him to take care of what we can not, He declares us righteous and at peace with Himself. He loves you and me that much.
We can solidly and confidently trust that He will make us like Him. He’s given us His Spirit to plant this hope in us. God will make His glory known.
So when we face hard things, we can know that our hope is not in vain because God’s love is true.
We can know this because He is a proven grace-giver. The God who loved us beyond comprehension when we were disgustingly unworthy of it loved us before we were justified, before He could declare us righteous.
And this is what we have in Jesus because of God’s love: new life by faith. A reconciled relationship that brings us wholeness and peace with the Creator Himself. A whole new realm of life in grace that forms the ground on which our souls’ feet can stand.
It’s a whole new reason to celebrate Christmas. God’s love gave us everything!