Friday, December 19, 2008

The Giver

(John 3:16)

Two thousand years ago, mankind received a precious gift. God, our creator, gave us His Son because of His great love. He desires us to live with Him when our days here on earth are completed.

God, who holds all of life in His hands, loved us so much He chose to share Himself with us in the form of Jesus.

God breathed life into Adam in the garden. Adam and Eve disobeyed His order. The Heavenly Father then raised up prophets, kings, and judges to deliver His message to the people but mankind didn’t follow the rules. Because of His grace, God sent Jesus to us.

As we proceed through this Advent season, let’s reflect on the giver as well as the gift.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Gift

(Luke 2:11)

God gave us a gift--the best one ever. He gave himself, in the form of a baby. The baby Jesus willingly gave up the glory of heaven to enter our world to allow us to learn how we should live.

The gift came to us in an unexpected way. People at that time looked for a Messiah to come. This savior would wear royal robes trimmed in ermine. He would be born in a palace, have a lot of wealth at his disposal, and have no need of anything. Or so they thought. Jesus was born in a stable, learned the carpenter trade from His earthly Father, had few resources, and probably made do with what he had.

God gave us a gift to adore, to follow and to serve. As we grow in Christ, let us learn to depend on the Gift we received from God.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The First to Hear--Sherpherds

(Luke 2:8)

The shepherds--lowliest of the low class--had no rank in Judean society. They couldn’t testify in court. With a semi-nomadic lifestyle, they spent a great deal of time away from their families.

These men had no comforts when they tended their flocks. They slept on the cold, hard ground at night. They might have had bedrolls.

They led a dreary and dangerous life. Wild animals always waited to pounce on the sheep. The shepherds fought off wolves with whatever they had. When the winter winds howled, they had to move their flocks into valleys or canyons between mountains to protect themselves and the sheep from the winter winds.

Yet, God chose to include them in His plan to spread the news of Jesus’ birth. He used them to convey the idea that Jesus came to earth for all of us--the homeless, the poverty stricken, the chronically ill, the seriously ill, the upwardly mobile, and the elite.

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...