Thursday, December 7, 2017

The Word Became Flesh & Made His Dwelling Among Us

"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

Paul Harvey told the story about a family on Christmas Eve. This family had a tradition where the Mother and children would go to the Christmas Eve service, and the Father would stay home and read the paper. When the family returns home from church, they would all gather to open up their presents.

The Father was not an evil man, but he just couldn't believe in the childhood stories anymore of God coming as a baby in a manger. As the family left for church, he opened up the evening paper and began to read by the fireplace.

Suddenly, he heard tapping on the window. It was a bird flying against the glass of his window trying to get out of the snow into the warmth of his home. The man had compassion on the bird, and he went outside, hoping to bring it in.

As he approached the bird, the bird just flew against the window even harder. Pretty soon, the bird flew into the bushes below the window, half frozen, yet too afraid to be caught by this huge man. The more the man tried to reach for the bird, the more the bird flew frantically into the snow and thorns of the bushes.

After a few minutes in the cold and seeing the bird continue to injure its self, the man yelled out in frustration, "Stupid bird, can't you understand that I'm trying to help?" The man paused and thought, "If only you understood you wouldn't fly away ... if only ... if only I could become a bird maybe I could get you to understand."

Just then, the church bells rang, as they always have on the hour. But when the man heard the bells this time, he fell to his knees and began to cry, saying, "Oh, God, I didn't understand. Oh, God, I didn't understand."

God's Son came in human form that we might understand from where we have come, for what reason we were separated and how we could be restored to God.

December 7, 2017

"You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly." Romans 5:6

The Apostle Paul writes after the fact that all the events of Christmas happened at precisely the right time and in exactly the right way!

believe that is true. You probably do too!

But, for Mary and Joseph, not so much! Christmas was an inconvenience for them!

Think about it!

What a terrible time to get pregnant! Mary was engaged to a wonderful man and was making plans for the dream wedding. But then the angel shows up with another plan. Mary would conceive by the Holy Spirit and bear a son. As far as she was concerned, it couldn't have happened at a worse time!

What a terrible time for the Caesar to declare a tax! Just when Mary and Joseph were trying to scrape up enough money to begin their new life together, now they have to cough up a bunch of it to Rome! From their perspective it couldn't have happened at a worse time!

What a terrible time to have to take a trip! Mary was nine months pregnant! And what a terrible trip to have to take, across the hilly, rocky roads of Galilee - ON A DONKEY!

What a terrible place to have to go! Bethlehem? Such a tiny little place with only one hotel! And what a terrible time for that one hotel to be all booked!

And, what a terrible time for the king to get paranoid! Mary has just given birth to a baby - in a manger inside a stable no less - and not they have to hit the road for another trip! This time they must head down to Egypt to escape the edict of the king to kill all newborn boys. What a hassle!

Just when everything seemed to be going wrong, God brought the miracle of salvation! When everything was uncomfortable and inconvenient for Mary and Joseph it was perfect timing for God!

That is another of the amazing truths of Christmas! God's timing is always perfect even if it doesn't fit your schedule! When everything seems to be going wrong, God can still work a miracle! IF you are obedient to Him in spite of the inconveniences.

This Christmas season, trust God's timing! Trust His sovereign goodness! Even if it looks like the worst time for something to happen, remember that when everything seemed to be going wrong God brought a miracle!

Obedience is a willingness to be out of control - and under His control!