Saturday, December 13, 2008

Understanding the reason

I am reading a story tomorrow night at our church Christmas Banquet that pops up every year when I search for Christmas stories. It does a great job of the answering the question about why Jesus would give up His life in heaven and come live here on earth with mortal men.

I pray that you are blessed as you read....

There was once a man who didn't believe in God, and he didn't hesitate to let others know how he felt about religion and religious holidays, like Christmas. His wife, however, did believe, and she raised their children to also have faith in God and Jesus, despite his disparaging comments.

One snowy Christmas Eve, his wife was taking their children to a Christmas Eve service in the farm community in which they lived. She asked him to come, but he refused.

"That story is nonsense!" he said. "Why would God lower Himself to come to Earth as a man? That's ridiculous!" So she and the children left, and he stayed home.

A while later, the winds grew stronger and the snow turned into a blizzard. As the man looked out the window, all he saw was a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire for the evening. Then he heard a loud thump. Something had hit the window. Then another thump. He looked out, but couldn't see more than a few feet.

When the snow let up a little, he ventured outside to see what could have been beating on his window. In the field near his house he saw a flock of wild geese. Apparently they had been flying south for the winter when they got caught in the snowstorm and couldn't go on. They were lost and stranded on his farm, with no food or shelter. They just flapped their wings and flew around the field in low circles, blindly and aimlessly. A couple of them had flown into his window, it seemed.

The man felt sorry for the geese and wanted to help them. The barn would be a great place for them to stay, he thought. It's warm and safe; surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm. So he walked over to the barn and opened the doors wide, then watched and waited, hoping they would notice the open barn and go inside.

The geese just fluttered around aimlessly and didn't seem to notice the barn or realize what it could mean for them. The man tried to get their attention, but that just seemed to scare them and they moved further away. He went into the house and came back out with some bread, broke it up, and made a breadcrumbs trail leading to the barn, but they still didn't catch on.

Now he was getting frustrated. He got behind them and tried to shoo them toward the barn, but they only got more scared and scattered in every direction except toward the barn. Nothing he did could get them to go into the barn where they would be warm and safe.

"Why don't they follow me?!" he exclaimed. "Can't they see this is the only place where they can survive the storm?" He thought for a moment and realized that they just wouldn't follow a human.

"If only I were a goose, then I could save them," he said out loud.

Then he had an idea. He went into barn, got one of his own geese, and carried it in his arms as he circled around behind the flock of wild geese. He then released it. His goose flew through the flock and straight into the barn - and one by one the other geese followed it to safety!

He stood silently for a moment as the words he had spoken a few minutes earlier replayed in his mind:

"If only I were a goose, then I could save them!"

Then he thought about what he had said to his wife earlier. "Why would God want to be like us? That's ridiculous!"

Suddenly it all made sense. That is what God had done. We were like the geese - blind, lost, and perishing. God had His Son become like us so He could show us the way and save us. That was the meaning of Christmas, he realized!

As the winds and blinding snow died down, his soul became quiet and pondered this wonderful thought. Suddenly he understood what Christmas was all about, why Christ had come.

Years of doubt and disbelief vanished like the passing storm. He fell to his knees in the snow, and prayed his first prayer:

"Thank You, God, for coming in human form to get me out of the storm!"


Peggy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Darlene said...

Beautiful story!!! I have never heard this before. Isn't it amazing how God uses things to help us realize that "HE is the answer for the world today.. Above Him there is no other...Jesus is the way." part of a song that just came to me that I use to sing as a little girl.
Thanks Beth!

Denise said...

Thanks for touching my heart with this story.

sailorcross said...

Hi Firefly!!

What an amazing story!! Put simply like this, it is so easy to understand why Jesus would come to earth from the perfect place of Heaven.

God needed us to see Him in human form so we could identify with Him--just like this man needed to see the correlation with the geese.

I see that there are some comments here crediting me with posting this wonderful story, and I apologize for this happening.

The story is a blessing to all will read it here, all who will hear you speak it this evening, and praying that this will open some eyes of those who need to seek shelter with God from the storms of their lives.


Joyfulsister said...

Hi Beth..
Thanks for sharing this story with us today.. It is a wonderful way to help answer those questions that at times seems so hard for others to comprehend. I will share this with my friends and family.

Hugz Lorie

Peggy said...

Sorry Beth & Karen!!! It's be nice to read the fine print!!! So here's a rewrite! Blessings on both of you!

Here I am with tears in my eyes
...praying for the blind, the lost and those perishing without knowing Jesus! Gotta get to work!

Is it alright with you if I email this story to my husband & another friend?

It is amazing to realize how awesome Our Heavenly Father is and how beautiful this illustration shows us! You found a good one. I pray you enjoy your time at your church's Christmas Banquet and that they are as blessed as this story has blessed me! May His spirit move!

May God continue to use "The Power of His Love" YOU, His Firefly ...and give wings to all that is within you. May He do this for Beth as well...Touching lives for Jesus one soul at a time into His Kingdom, delivered from darkness & praying they have eyes to see & a heart open like this barn...seeking protection from the storms in life & more! Thanks! Indeed this Christmas Story should touch many at the banquet in His honor!Bless you...God always makes sense out of our nonsense!!!

Dorothy Champagne said...

Your congregation will be blessed be this story. I know I was.