Hebrews 10:5 “Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says, “SACRIFICE AND OFFERING YOU HAVE NOT DESIRED, BUT A BODY YOU HAVE PREPARED FOR ME;
The Christmas Story written in ages past, from the foundation of the world comes afresh to us at this time of year. It is the story of a love for mankind so deep, so intimate, and so personal that we should be overcome with joy. “A Body you have prepared for me.” Jesus born of a virgin, in a musty stable was the providential plan of all time.
Luke 1:7 “And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
The angels were the first to announce His birth. “For behold, I bring you good news of great joy which shall be for all people.” Luke 2: 10 (NAS)
The birth of a Savior announced by the angels was in the heart of our Creator God from the foundation of the world. In Genesis, after the fall, there had to be a plan for the redemption of man. God’s heart created man for fellowship and to be an instrument to show His glory to all of humankind.
The first prophesy to introduce the plan is found in Genesis 3:15 “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel.”
The last book of God’s Word is titled “The Revelation of Jesus Christ”. There is so much more to this story to come. But for now, we are like Israel in the days of Simeon who longed for the consolation of Israel. We are anxiously anticipating Jesus’ return to gather His saints. Where He has been preparing for us a place.
John 1:14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
We want to reflect during the first week of December on the preparation of our hearts.
I Corinthians 2:9 “but just as it is written, “THINGS WHICH EYE HAS NOT SEEN AND EAR HAS NOT HEARD, AND which HAVE NOT ENTERED THE HEART OF MAN, ALL THAT GOD HAS PREPARED FOR THOSE WHO LOVE HIM.”
What are we doing to prepare for a true season of Giving? Christmas is about more than giving material things. It is about giving ourselves, to God first and foremost but also to others.
How are you loving others? How are you loving yourself?
We often focus on how to love others. At least, we think about it a lot. Our best intentions? Right? Some are easy to love, others not so much. Sometimes situations are stressed to the maximum levels or so we feel they are. When we add in the Christmas season that is supposed to be magical and electric with all the sights, smells and activity, we can easily be overcome.
Now the second question: How are you loving yourself? I am not speaking of material things or selfish entitlements, those over-the-top attitudes and ideas we are bombarded with daily.
In order to serve and love the way Jesus did, we need time to de-stress, alone time with the one who is our Peace. We need rest. Even Jesus withdrew from the crowds. It does not come easily! We must prepare for that time. It is essential to soul survive!
Some of the hardest words we say when others want our precious time are, “No, I am sorry. I can’t right now!” This is especially true in respect to our children’s training. “No, I am sorry, you can’t right now!” Others will certainly not understand at times. But if you will use that time wisely, intentionally, with REST, TIME WITH JESUS, PROPER NUTRITION, (yes, I had to bring that up, didn’t I?) others will see the difference in the light you will shine. You will burn brightly and not “burn out” with no influence on your world.
Remember the true meaning is to worship the one who came to give us life, abundantly.
May we be loving and serving one another in the spirit with which Jesus loved and served us.
Freda, (trying to follow my own advice.)
Pray for one another! There are 729 of us treading now.
Pentonix: Away in a Manger