’Tis the season to encounter our limitations.
Embedded in this remembrance is a surprising asset to be leveraged.
You’re just as familiar with being under-resourced as I am. Not enough money in the bank to pay cash for the unexpected car repair. Not enough time to be fully prepared for the holidays. Not enough working lights to finish the Christmas decorations.
But the powerful truth behind Jesus’ birth is that unlimited love can never be constrained, even by the limitations of being human. Would we even be able to grasp the implications of this hope had not baby Jesus persevered to the cross by overcoming distractions, temptations, adversity and capacity restraints?
Whatever else is true, you and I can only live one moment at a time. As eager children on the Eve can testify, there’s no hurdling over the night’s hours of fitful sleep so Christmas morning’s gift-opening experience comes sooner. We can’t fast forward the three-day flu so we’re healthy in two hours. Today’s newly planted corn won’t be ready to harvest on Friday. The clock is always ticking, never hurried, and relentlessly scrutinizing what we do with the time we’ve been given.
Our days, weeks and years are encountered as one minute chewables by every person on the planet. Money, health, nationality, education…nothing changes the capacity tucked inside each 60-second capsule.
Self-discipline is a waning virtue in a culture that doesn’t like to wait for anything. Perseverance cannot grow the fruit of character without the benefit of capacity limitations to overcome. Unfailing love is only impressive when it prevails in spite of the obstacles adversity throws in its path.
Extraordinary heat and pressure are needed to reshape once-hardened steel for use.
It will take a special breed of leader to show this digital generation how to power through life’s minutes with joy and hope in Jesus Christ. I am invested in multiplying such leaders for the challenges of this season in history. “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” (Philippians 1:6)
One minute at a time.