The Gift of God’s Faithfulness 

Written by: Kelly McSparran
Featured image for “The Gift of God’s Faithfulness ”

My family chops down our Christmas tree in the Colorado mountains every year. We find the perfect tree, tie it to the roof of our car, and drive it home. And without fail—no matter how great the tree may have looked in the woods—it always has a bit of a Charlie Brown feel when we prop it up in our living room.

Then, sipping hot chocolate, we adorn the tree with our eclectic collection of ornaments, each holding special memories. We hang oversized handmade crafts that the kids made in preschool next to beautiful felt mittens. We put our firstborn’s “baby’s first Christmas ornament” next to a giant moose and a delicate flamingo that the kids received in early elementary school.

My favorite ornament is a glass globe with a snowy scene inside that we nestle into a safe spot next to the trunk. Sixteen years ago, my husband put a diamond ring inside that globe and held it open as he proposed to me.

And slowly but surely that once sparse-looking tree becomes full and warm and a reminder of all the wonderful Christmases we as a family have had. I look forward to this part of Christmas every year because setting up our tree helps us remember different seasons and stages of life.

It isn’t just a silly tradition or something we only do to fill a generally empty corner in our home. Each ornament is a chance to intentionally remember how faithful God has been to our family over the years. Our home is not just full of the simple smell of pine—it is filled with gratitude and hope as we build spiritual intentionality around this fun family tradition.

Throughout Scripture, God created practices to help his people remember who he was and all he had done for them. Celebrating the gift of God’s faithfulness means finding active ways to remember how he has been with you.

I wonder if, during this Advent, we might experience a breath of new life around some of our favorite traditions by keeping the true gift of Christmas—Jesus’ faithfulness in loving, saving, and caring for us—at the center of our celebrations.

God’s Faithfulness Means He Cares for Us

Hundreds of years before Jesus’ birth, the prophet Isaiah sang about the coming of our Savior:

For a child will be born for us,
a son will be given to us,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
He will be named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6 CSB, (emphasis mine)

In this verse, “Eternal Father” can also be translated as “Everlasting Father”—as in a God that always has been and always will be. His character is unchanging, and he is the Father of all creation. God established our world, and his holiness sets him apart.

He has limitless love, grace, compassion, power, and perspective. And he offers us all of that in and through the person of Jesus. What’s more, he sees us, knows us, longs to help us live the fullest life, and—as our good Eternal Father—even wants to give us good gifts (see Matthew 7:11).

What an incredible gift in and of itself! Even though he holds the expanse of the universe in his hands, God also cares intimately for us.

What would it look like to reflect on this great gift over the next few weeks, using a holiday tradition like tree trimming or making popcorn garlands as a time to meditate on God’s faithful love and care for us?

God’s Faithfulness Means that We Can Trust His Promises

Know that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps his gracious covenant loyalty for a thousand generations with those who love him and keep his commands.

Deuteronomy 7:9 CSB

Faithfulness is central to God’s character. Even when life feels like it isn’t going according to our plan, we know we can depend on God to be our security and peace because of his steadfast character.

God promised to be with us (Deuteronomy 31:8, Isaiah 41:10), to love us unconditionally (Romans 5:8-10) and forever (1 Chronicles 16:34), to provide for our needs (Matthew 6:31–33), to carry our burdens and give us rest (Matthew 11:28–30), to answer our prayers (Mark 11:24), to save us (John 3:16) and forgive our sins (1 John 1:9), and to give our lives purpose (Ephesians 2:10).

In these promises, we can find stability and know that, no matter our circumstances, we can trust God to follow through.

What would it look like to start a new tradition this Christmas of sharing with one another how God has been faithful to his promises over the past years? Perhaps around the table before a holiday meal, give each person a chance to share.

God’s Faithfulness Means We Have Access to Forgiveness

Because of the Lord’s faithful love
we do not perish,
for his mercies never end.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness!

Lamentations 3:22–23 CSB

Every morning, we get a fresh opportunity to experience the love and grace of God—the love and grace offered to us in its fullest form through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. This is one of the greatest gifts of the gospel: that no matter our mistakes, Jesus’ love and sacrifice are sufficient for us. He is faithful to renew our lives again and again, as the author of Hebrews reminds us:

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin. Therefore, let us approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in time of need.

Hebrews 4:15–16 CSB

God’s extravagant grace also means we can love as he loves us (see John 13:34) and forgive those who have hurt us because we’ve experienced his forgiveness (see Colossians 3:13). That means that his love and sacrifice change the way we are to approach our relationships.

That said, full forgiveness can take time and sometimes it is best to start in private prayer between you and God. But if we never intentionally seek to forgive others, it is likely that those hidden wounds will never heal.

As you come together with others this holiday season—especially as you see those with whom you have a long and complicated history—what might it look like to start with prayer, asking God for his help to forgive and love as he does in Jesus?

God’s Faithfulness Means We Have Strength to Face Challenges

But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one.

2 Thessalonians 3:3 CSB

The world is broken and hurting, and we have an enemy that seeks to “steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10 CSB). During the holidays, these challenges can feel especially difficult as we grieve those we have lost, mourn the family we wish we had, or feel the full anxiety of returning to a complex home.

In these difficulties, the pain can be immense, and it is easy to feel alone. But God has promised to never leave us. He knows each hardship we will face, and we can find hope in knowing that he’ll be by our side through it all.

What would it look like to use the traditions surrounding Christmas lights to remind us of the hope and strength God offers us in the midst of this dark world?

Every time we see lights on a house or a tree, it can be a reminder of Jesus, the Light that “shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it” (John 1:5 CSB). You can even practice lighting a candle during prayer as a way to focus on this truth.

There are lots of ways to reflect on the gift of God’s faithfulness this Christmas season, whether by lighting the Advent candles once a week, attending church as a family, or journaling about how God has been working in your life.

Whatever traditions we choose, let’s be intentional about them, so that we might “hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, since he who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10:23 CSB).

We have a FREE advent calendar just for you that goes along with our advent blogs. Click the link to download your copy today – Download Our Free Advent Calendar!