USA (MNN) – In a year that has been anything but normal, holiday cheer feels especially important. However, with many states and countries continuing or ramping up restrictions, this time of year may bring additional frustration and discontent.
Ron Hutchcraft with Ron Hutchcraft Ministries says that global circumstances right now give Christians a unique perspective and opportunity. “It’s the COVID Christmas. It’s the pandemic Christmas because it’s the 2020 Christmas. I think we have an uncommon opportunity to really share our Jesus with people. They are hope starved. They really are hope starved and Jesus is all about hope.”
A Year of Loss
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought increased rates of depression and other adverse mental health situations in the United States. Isolation has increased these struggles. To those without the hope of Christ, the losses of the year can feel unbearable.
Hutchraft reminds Christians that even when it feels like important things are being taken away, Christ brought us a salvation that is unlosable. “The key word here is unlosable. In a year of loss, what do we have because of Jesus that’s unlosable? It’s unlosable love. Nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus, our Lord – Romans 8:39. There is one love that is disease proof. It is desertion proof. It is death proof.”
What a comfort in a broken year of loss and disappointment! However, that love comes with the command to share it. Christ did not save his Church to sit on the good news they’ve been given. He commands His people to go out into the world and share hope with those who are headed for despair without Christ.
Sharing the Truth in Love
Hutchchraft says that Christmas 2020 is an amazing time to share the good news of Gospel because people are seeking hope and coming up empty in circumstances that feel foreign. He encourages Christians to share why a relationship with Jesus matters. “All the eruption of things day after day, all of the torrent of news coming at you. What’s the difference Jesus makes? Share it.”
For many Christians sharing Jesus with family or friends can feel intimidating or awkward. Hutchcraft says that one key to sharing your faith is authenticity. Talk about your struggles and how the year has been difficult for you. But don’t stop there. How has your relationship with Christ impacted those difficult times?
Being honest about your relationship with Christ without arguing about the other person’s faults opens the door for dialogue. Sharing your experience helps keep conversations open and leaves room for questions.
“Share it in a story, your story,” Hutcraft says. “That doesn’t threaten them. They don’t have to get defensive that you’re talking about ME being a sinner. You’re talking about YOU being a sinner. You’re talking about you being separated from God and the difference it’s made, since Jesus took that wall down.”
A Call to Reconciliation and Hope
The truth is that the Gospel isn’t just a feel good story. The love of God infiltrating day to day life makes a difference on Earth and for eternity. A person’s relationship with God is totally changed when they accept Christ as Savior.
“For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.” – Romans 5:10.
People need to hear the truth of the Gospel and be reconciled to Christ.
“I’ll just summarize it this way,” Hutchcraft says. “When that first 90 something year old lady got the first injection of COVID vaccine in England, there the newspaper headline was two words, injecting hope. That’s what we have the opportunity to do this Christmas, is be the ones who inject hope into people we care about. Don’t miss this moment.”
Pray and look for opportunities to share the unbelievable hope of the Gospel with someone this Christmas.
To read more from Ron Hutchcraft about Christmas 2020, click here. To learn more about Ron Hutchraft Ministries click here.
Header Image Courtesy of Navy Medicine on Flickr https://bit.ly/3p91rMD