2018 Christmas Devotional — December 11

Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 (click to view Scripture below)

God’s love is something we don’t deserve and certainly didn’t qualify to receive. Today’s reading starts with the simple statement that forgiveness restores what has been lost. (vs.1-2) Life always includes a fair amount of tragedy that none of us bargained for. There really are victims in this world that never seem to get a break. But the truth is,  we don’t just need to feel better about ourselves or have a turn for the better in our lives; we need to face the fact that we all have contributed to the brokenness of our lives. The good news in verse 2 makes clear that each of us has been forgiven our iniquities and had our sins covered.

The story of the birth of Christ is not merely a narrative of good things coming to the earth because of the birth of one child; it is also the daunting realization that the human condition of sin afflicts us all. Our world is filled with those who have had a rough time in life. We feel sorry for people who have experienced tragedies. Jesus’ birth is not just about the alleviation of their pain, but the fact that Jesus Christ comes to wipe out the root of sin in our lives.

The psalm goes on to say that this incredible process of salvation is where steadfast love and faithfulness meet. (v10) The psalmist paints a picture that is rare in the 21st century: a power for transformation that can be counted on over the long haul. In a world where nothing lasts long, where new versions and updates are the order of the day; God’s provision is enduring. The coming of Jesus provides for the possibility of new standing with God. You are considered righteous before God and that results in peace.

The love of God does not merely provide what we think we need; which so often is a wish that the consequences of our poor decisions could just vanish. Rather, God provides us a new relationship with our Creator and Savior that results in more than the removal of chaos in our lives, but a peace that can’t be known aside from an acceptance of this Savior.

Byron Klaus
Vice President, ChildHope
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, that you give us more than we ask for. When we ask for the elimination of chaos in our lives, you provide peace that goes beyond our understanding. Thanks for giving us what is Good when what we looked for was merely relief.

See other devotionals in this series.

Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 (ESV)

Lord, you were favorable to your land;
you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
You forgave the iniquity of your people;
you covered all their sin. Selah

Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
for he will speak peace to his people, to his saints;
but let them not turn back to folly.
Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him,
that glory may dwell in our land.
10 Steadfast love and faithfulness meet;
righteousness and peace kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness springs up from the ground,
and righteousness looks down from the sky.
12 Yes, the Lord will give what is good,
and our land will yield its increase.
13 Righteousness will go before him
and make his footsteps a way.

See other devotionals in this series.


Scripture quotations are from The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.