Pastor Clint Lange, Hillside Community Church

Pastor Clint Lange, Hillside Community Church

Christmas is the greatest gift of all

A Christmas letter from the Hillside Community Church of 100 Mile

I remember the Christmas season with fondness.

As a child, my mom would bake shortbread and we would all participate in decorating the house and tree. Christmas music would fill our house and gifts would be carefully wrapped. Gatherings and dinners with family and friends were always memorable.

However, not everyone’s experience with Christmas past has been as positive as mine. I have seen numerous people looking very sad at this time of the year. For many who have experienced the pain of loss or turmoil, the Christmas season seems to bring with it a hollow ache of loneliness and emptiness and a longing for something more.

Whether our experiences with Christmas are good or bad, I have discovered that no lasting peace of mind can be found in any activity or celebration in and of itself. We were made for something more. At the root of our being, we were made to have a deep, meaningful relationship with our Creator.

Sadly, humanity’s relationship with God has been fractured because of our rebellion against Him. The Bible tells us that, “The Earth suffers for the sins of its people, for they have twisted God’s instructions, violated His laws, and broken His everlasting covenant.” Not one of us is good enough to have a relationship with God on our own. The Bible also tells us, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” and that “ the wages of sin is death.” This is why the world needs a Saviour.

God in his love did not abandon humanity to suffer the fate of their sin. An ancient prophecy was given to a man named Isaiah who predicted, “A child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His government and its peace will never end….”

This prophecy was fulfilled hundreds of years later on the very first Christmas morning when Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem. At the time of his birth the Bible tells us a choir of angels proclaimed, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”

The true meaning of Christmas is this: despite humanity’s state of brokenness, God loved us enough to make a provision for people to come to peace with Him. Romans 6:23 tells us, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Jesus Christ came into the world as God in the flesh, to pay the full penalty for the sins of every person who believes and places their trust in Him. Jesus Christ, the Saviour, was God’s gift to the world. In fact, He was the greatest gift that could be given. The peace of God, of which the angels sang on the first Christmas, only comes when a person truly believes and asks Jesus to forgive their sins.

When a person surrenders the control of their life to Jesus, the Holy Spirit of God sets them free from the bondage of sin. Forgiveness is given and true peace with God is experienced. This is when the true meaning of Christmas comes to life as our Creator intended it to be. God invites everyone in the world to accept His precious Christmas gift. Will you receive the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior this Christmas? My prayer is that you will. Merry Christmas!

Pastor Clint Lange

Hillside Community Church of 100 Mile

100 Mile House