12: Light

Let there be light!

In many places in the Bible, light represented the entrance of the divine presence in the ordinary world, clarity for decision making, and guidance for life’s journey. The first recorded statement was one spoken by God to jump-start the creation of our beautiful world.

“I am the light of the world.” – John 8:12

In Jewish sanctuaries, there was a fire that burned perpetually at the altar, and the priests were tasked with daily rekindling it with wood so it doesn’t go out. It represented perpetual conversation with God and man. However, unlike the fire that burns out or lamps whose wick need to be replaced continually, Jesus is that eternal light that always shines. He never goes out because He is alive and active in any one who believes in Him.

He is the light of openness and trust and vulnerability. He is the light that gives clarity and sense of purpose. He is the light that guides through and through, and ignites hearts for exploits.

And he says you, yes YOU — are the light of the world.

Darkness only prevails in a place until light is shone. The one who was born on a wintry night is the light the world needs. The one who is now made a light is the one who shows what the world needs.

Do not stay hidden. Shine!

“You are the light of the world. – Matthew 5:14

THE END

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Post-Script
I have taken you through my 12 Toys of Christmas. This is a good time to refresh your mind about what truly matters. The few days before year ends is great time to take stock and re-strategize. Let the Lord within have His way. Seek Him, Sing your new song. Bask in the comfort and guidance of the Spirit. Receive the gift that keeps on giving. Dwell in the shadow of His wings. Shine!

2020, are you ready?

11: Throne

How do you feel when the odds are against you, when you feel that everyone around you, who should celebrate you is out to get you? How do you respond when you feel defeated before you even step out to do something good with your life?

Jesus’ survival was at stake from the get-go. The throne during his day was against him — the king sent Assassins after him. At such challenging times, it is very easy to lose hope and yield control to the difficult situation. But as I read through the story from the Bible, I started to think to myself,

“whose throne is really in control?”

Is it the earthly throne that could be snatched in a coup by someone more powerful, the throne that could become empty when the one who sits on it stops breathing? Could it be that the existing powerful challenges and authority I so quickly cower before is only as valid and the fleeting breathe in every human?

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God showed us through Jesus’ story that He is in control, not anyone else.

So that the next time you feel small and threatened, you can pause and ask yourself — whose throne is really in control?

I hope you know the answer.

Pro Tip: it’s your heavenly Father’s throne.

“ — no weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed,” Isaiah 54:17

Tomorrow, the last day, we will be looking at a Lamp

10: Dove

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Doves and Pigeons!
They are cute stout-bodied members of the Columbidae family with short necks and bills that have a large distribution in most places in the world. Jesus Christ’s birth and life sure had its share of birds — turtle doves and pigeons were utilized on the day of his dedication, a dove often represented the descent of the Spirit, symbolizing the presence of God and the manifestations of power!

But unlike these beautiful birds, the Spirit of God is in fact, everywhere. And the best news is that, because of Jesus, He is still here, with us. And not just around in nature, but inside of every one who believes in Him, and is able to provide power, comfort, truth, strength, direction for everything life spins.

Jesus’ fulfilled promise, “I will send him unto you,” holds true today.
Will you take advantage of it?
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“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,” Luke 4:18

Tomorrow’s toy is: Throne

9: Temple

In Jesus’ time, the temple was a place of fortification. It was a sacred place, the seat of spiritual authority, and to the people, a place to detox, to congregate, to fellowship, to learn and be empowered. It was a symbol of hope in the perilous times in the history of the Jews. It was a portal of divine connectedness. They would say, it’s God’s dwelling place.

You — are a temple.
You are God’s dwelling place.

What does this mean?
It means that you need to protect that place within — that temple that is YOU. Take time to cultivate your mind and spirit. Build, weed, nurture and protect your internal space. Learn to think, grow your faith, sharpen your perspective and open your heart to love and be loved. All this is possible when God’s spirit breathes life to dead places, and pours fresh water into your dry land.

Any sacredness, any excellence, any wisdom, any good thing you will exude to others will come from within.

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“— your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you —” -1 Corinthians 6:19

Tomorrow’s toy is: Dove

8: Compass (plus Merry Christmas!)

A compass makes me think of a journey.

Joseph and Mary were directed to Egypt, so they would avoid Herod’s murderous campaign. It was no doubt, an arduous journey. It was an uncharted terrain in their lives – giving birth to their first son and escaping from the sword of the most powerful person in their jurisdiction. But it was worth it because they carried Jesus, who grew to become the Savior of the whole world.

Even in His adult life, Jesus had a sense of purpose and was directed by God in all He did. He’s finished the course and has passed the life-baton to you.

“What do you want to do with your life?” “Who are your friends?” “ Is this business a good deal?” “What do you want to study?” “Who do you want to marry?” Trust me, you need direction.

Your life is a journey through uncharted terrain. You have a purpose, but you do not have a map so you do not know every little detail about your life’s journey. If you did, you wouldn’t need faith.

But you have a compass from the One who says “I will lead you and show you the way to go.”

You can set your sights on the glory and purpose of your creation and He can make your journey through the triumphs and challenges of life worth it. He can direct your path.

All you need to do is trust Him. You don’t have to go alone.

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“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. -Psalm 32:8

On a major note,

Merry Christmas!

Tomorrow’s toy is: Temple

7: Crown

Crowns represent authority, royalty and kingship.
Good things ehn? But the ‘crown’ of Jesus’ day was after his life.

“When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him;” Matthew 2:3

Herod felt threatened by the little baby that was called the King of the Jews. In the process of hunting the baby Jesus, he caused pain for a lot more mothers and families. He thought the violence would assert the authenticity of his ruler-ship. Thankfully, Herod’s sword could not take off Jesus’ crown because God’s shield was over him.

Jesus is the true king who died and brokered the peace and salvation of his people through the sacrifice of His blood.

So what swords are threatening your crown? Your identity? Your passion? Your heart? Are the crowns within? Remember that you are only being hunted because you are an asset to this generation. You are valuable.

You are a child of the King, if you believe. And that means there is Someone looking out for you.

Trust that He will take care of you.

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“Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” Matthew 2:13

Tomorrow’s toy is: Compass

6: Shield

The sword is a historical weapon of war. The soldiers king Herod sent to find and kill Jesus most likely took swords. They went in the power of the king, ready to wreak havoc on countless lives.

With swords, we remember shields. Herod’s sword could not take off Jesus’ crown. That is because

God’s shield was over him.

Here is something exciting — Jesus is your shield. He took the hits so you do not have to. The divine shield is still active today. He protects anyone who trusts Him.

Do you know that?

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“— he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.” Psalm 18:30

Tomorrow’s toy is: Crown