This Christmas season, instead of cards, I am sharing what has been shared with me. Not long ago, in prayer, God gave me a vision of an empty folder. The folder that I saw was mine. In seeing the folder, I knew that it had held a record of every wrong that I had ever committed in thought, word or deed. But now the folder is completely empty. In an instant, I understood. In that same instant, everything changed.
As God in His Grace has made me more aware of His Righteousness and my own lack of it, I have also been made more aware of the magnitude of the collection of wrongs that our Just God has every right to hold against me forever. At times I feel the need to cry out with David in Psalm 51:
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. (v.1) …
Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. (v.9)
But in His Infinite Goodness, our God of Mercy has done so much more than we can ask or imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) Had the record of my wrongs in the folder that I saw simply been stuck through with a heavy black marker to make them supposedly unreadable, as criminal records are sometimes shown to be on detective shows, the record would still be there, waiting for someone to come along with a way to remove the cover-up. But our God has done so much more than to simply strike through the record of our transgressions, our iniquity… our ungodly behavior. He has traded folders with each and every one of us who are willing to accept God’s Sacrifice for our sake, taking our guilty records from us and giving each of us The Empty Folder of Christ’s Innocence, meeting our eternal need for Infinite Mercy and Grace.
To serve us all in that way, our God humbled Himself in the body of a man, born as a babe to a woman, immersing Himself in the pain of the world… the pain that I and others have inflicted upon each other and, therefore, upon our God, whose creation we all are. Yet, God bore our guilt and pain, sharing His Joy in doing so with us.
This Christmas, in celebration of the Christ Child’s birth, may we each receive greater understanding of the nature of The Gift through the symbolism of The Empty Folder: new beginnings in Christ Jesus.
Every day is Christmas: God with us, Immanuel, our Saving Grace. Rejoice! Rejoice in the Good News: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given…” (Isaiah 9:6a) May The Empty Folder be a reminder of the fullness of God’s Grace, given to us in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of His Son.
Cathy Scott, 2011