Activated

The Birthday Party

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Dearest Loretta,

Hello, dear friend. Well, as you know, it’s almost time for My birthday again. Last year they had a real big party for Me, and it seems like they will again this year. Everyone has been shopping and preparing for it for months now, and there have been announcements and advertisements almost every day about how soon it’s coming. It’s nice to know that at least one time each year some people are thinking about Me a little.

Many years ago, when people first started celebrating My birthday, they seemed to realize and appreciate how much I had done for them. Today it seems that most people hardly know what My birthday is all about. Nevertheless, I enjoy seeing people getting together and having a good time, and I’m happy about how much fun it is for the little children. Just the same, it seems that most folks are missing the point of it all.

Like last year, for example: When My birthday came around, they threw a big party, but I wasn’t even invited! Can you believe that? I was supposed to be the guest of honor, and they forgot all about Me. Here they had begun preparing for the festivities two months in advance, but when the big day came, I was left out in the cold. To be honest, it’s happened so many times in recent years that I wasn’t even surprised.

Even though I wasn’t invited, I slipped in quietly and stood off to the side, unnoticed. Everyone was drinking, laughing, and having a merry time, when all of a sudden, in came this fat old fellow in a bright red suit and a phony white beard, shouting, “Ho, Ho, Ho!” He looked like he’d had more than enough to drink, but he somehow managed to weave his way across the floor while everyone cheered. When he collapsed into a big armchair, all of the children ran over to him and yelled, “Santa! Santa!” I mean, you would have thought that the whole holiday was in his honor!

Finally I just had to leave. I walked out the door, and no one even noticed that I’d gone. I could hardly remember the last time I’d felt so low. Maybe you think I don’t cry, Loretta, but I did that night.

That’s why I was so touched when I came by your house that evening, and you and your little family took Me in and treated Me royally. I was deeply moved when you all sang “Happy Birthday” to Me. It had been such a long time since anyone had thought to do that. I treasure friends like you! It’s comforting to know that there are a few other folks around who also remember Me on My birthday—sweet folks like you who are close to Me and celebrate My birthday with a nice time and a simple meal together. I never miss being with them on that day.

That little manger scene you had put up in the corner of your living room was very nice. I appreciate it when people commemorate My birth like that. But did you know that in some countries, it’s now against the law to put manger scenes in parks or schools or other public places? And I’m talking about supposedly Christian countries! What are things coming to?

Another thing that amazes Me is how, on My birthday, most people give gifts only to each other, instead of to Me. Let Me ask you, wouldn’t you find it odd if, when your birthday came along, all your friends decided to celebrate it by giving presents only to each other and not to you?

Someone once told Me, “Well, it’s because You’re not here physically, so how can we give You presents?” My answer to that one was, “Then give gifts of food and clothing to the poor. Go visit the lonely. Help those who need it. Any gift you give to your needy fellow man, I’ll consider a gift to Me personally.”

Well, sad to say, things are getting worse. Now a lot of people go so far as to leave My name out of My birthday greeting. They replace My name with an “X.”—X–mas! What an insult! What more could they do to push Me out of the picture on My own birthday?

Well, I’ve got a surprise for them—or rather for those of you who love Me and appreciate all I’ve done for you. I’m going to let you in on a little secret, Loretta. This is something I’ve been planning for quite a while, and I think it’s just about time. I’m going to hold My own party! How about that? It’s going to be the biggest, most fantastic feast you could possibly imagine. There will be room for everyone who wants to come, and I know you will, Loretta. I’m sending out the invitations now, and when everything’s ready and the time is right, I’m going to spring it as a big surprise!

Please let Me know right away if you’d like to come, and I’ll reserve you a place and write your name in large gold letters in My big guest book.

Much love,
Jesus

 

* * *

Do you know the real meaning of Christmas? The Bible tells us, “God so loved the world [and that includes you] that He gave His only Son [Jesus], that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). God loves you so much that He sent His own Son, Jesus, into the world on the very first Christmas, so He could eventually die on the cross and take the punishment for every wrong you have ever done.

Have you received God’s great Christmas gift to you—Jesus and all that comes with Him: forgiveness, unfailing love, everlasting life, and much, much more? Give your heart to Jesus, and He will give His heart, love, joy, and peace to you. Then you will be His forever, and you will have a place reserved at the great party He’s planning in Heaven. Don’t miss it!

 
 

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