To all who received him . . . he gave the right to become children of God. (John 1:12)

Imagine being alone. Without hope. A parentless child living on the filthy streets. Weak. Having nothing. Your only sustenance is scraps from a trash heap, which may fill you temporarily but offer no lasting benefit and may even harm you. Losing the battle to survive, you are powerless to change your circumstances. Spiritually speaking, that’s us separated from God.

Now imagine someone enters your world. A rescuer. More amazingly, a king. And he comes to you! All you have to do is receive him, come to him. That’s it! And you become his true child, adopted into his royal family.

Today’s Scripture tells us that’s exactly what happened at Christmas. God entered our world. He rescued us, out of ashes, into glory. Turning an urchin into a royal.

Ah, but here’s the catch. Just as Christ was obedient and came to us in our depravity, we must be obedient and do what is really a profoundly simple thing: receive and believe. And when we do, we become God’s sons and daughters. Then we see and experience His glory, the glory of a Father “full of grace and truth.” If you haven’t taken that step, do not delay. And if you have, take the time to marvel in the glory of God, and of Him coming to us. A rescuer in the form of a tiny baby.

If you haven’t received Him, do; if you have, invite another into the family today.

Diane Gardner lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband. She enjoys oil painting, theater, music, and church ministry.