Friday, December 25, 2015

For Unto Us...

For unto us a child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of His government and peace
There will be no end,
Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom,
To order it and establish it with judgment and justice
From that time forward, even forever.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.
Isaiah 9:6-7 (NKJV)

My father passed away this month. A time that is reserved for joy and peace between everyone, has for me become a time of grief and turmoil. Yet my father's love for me is a great comfort for me. Even as I mourn his passing, I know that his faith, and mine, tells me he has not really died. His spirit lives on and is right now in the presence of the Holy God of Israel. The promise of his faith, and mine, tells me that I will see him again because in a little town of Bethlehem, a little baby was born, who was the savior of mankind. The child brought us peace between God and man by completing his mission, sent to die on a desolate hilltop outside Jerusalem. His death brought an end to the enmity of God with man, whose sin had separated us from Him. God wanted everyone to come back to him, and so He sent his one and only Child. That child would be blameless, sinless until the moment on the cross when He became sin's horrible separation and died there for us, dying in our place, so that we could know Him again.

It was this substitution, this Great Exchange,* that completely amazed my father. He could not "get over" this wonderful turn of events that now allowed him to know God again. It's this relationship that is continued, even now, this first Christmas since I've seen him with these eyes for the last time. He is alive, more alive than I could ever be in this earthly body, because of a tiny baby's birth in some podunk byway in a barn among smelly animals and sheep whose shepherds had just been scared nearly to death by a heavenly burst of praise out in the fields nearby. This birth fulfilled by time and location the many seemingly impossible prophecies that had been set forth by prophets hundreds of years before.

These prophecies were read by my dad to supplement the Christmas story on Christmas morning. His voice is today silent, but his heart and mine echo the words like never before. This peace is possible for you to have just like my dad and I have. All that's necessary is for you to accept it in you heart and choose Him as your savior and lord. You can know God personally and meet me and my dad, Jesus and His Dad, and many more people all waiting to join you in heaven. That's the destination of the train I'm on. I don't know when the train will arrive, but I know that I'm making great time!

My dad and I on board the 2005 iteration of Rio Grande Scenic Railroad's La Veta Pass train, where we met Ed Ellis and enjoyed a great day together. He's a Grande fan, like me.
* This song was put together and performed by my dad's good friend, Bruce Carroll.

If you have questions about me, my dad, or our faith, I welcome all three at!◊