His name shall be called Wonderful, Counseler, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6b
Every Jewish family probably knew the passage and longed for the coming of the Messiah to restore their land, but who had any idea it would happen the way it did? Do we have any idea how it happened? In the next few days let's explore the reality of the miracle of our Savior's birth. Remember your comments are always welcome.
Monday's Readings: Remember to read the entire passage and let the Lord show you the verse(s) that will be significant in your life. The verse(s) I comment on is the verse the Lord had for me. That's why comments and sharing are significant, so we all may benefit.
Luke 1:1-25 (vs. 6,7) Both Zecharias and Elizabeth were faithful to God. They kept His commandments, but it seems they were being judged by the community because Elizabeth was barren. She had no children. The people took it as a sign that Zecharias and Elizabeth were out of favor with God. Not true. God was waiting for the right time to use them both to demonstrate His power and to reveal His message.
It's hard to wait when we are discouraged and ridiculed, when people don't understand. But... we must understand God has a plan. Whether the issue is children, husband, wife, weight, beauty, money, whatever, God is in control and He has a plan for each of us.
Father, help me not to rush into things, but live by faith knowing, You are in control and You have the best plan for me. In Jesus name. Amen.
Tuesday Readings: Luke1: 26-38 (vs 38) Mary believed the angel and wanted to follow God's plan. But does she have any idea the hardships it will bring? I would think the first thing she might do would have been to tell her mom. Have you ever wondered how Mary's parents figured in the story?
Growing up in the '50's and 60's we sometimes saw teenage girls "disappear". You know, Aunt Sue or Cousin Jane, who lives in Somewhere was sick and needed the girl to help out a little while. Six to eight months later the girl reappears. Did you ever wonder why the angel mentioned Cousin Elizabeth to Mary? Could it be that Mary's mom and dad sent her to the distant hill country because they couldn't believe Mary's story? I'm sure they didn't want their daughter to be the talk of the community. Why did Elizabeth hide herself? Could it be that if she had told she was expecting in her old age the people would have deemed her the crazy old lady?
Father , help me to be as Mary, willing to follow You no matter the hardships that come. In Jesus name. Amen.
Luke 1: 39-56 (vs49). Mary saw how great a thing God had done for her - her salvation, allowing her to be the mother of the Savior, the Messiah, and providing a friend in Elisabeth who understood.
When things seem overwhelming, and I'm sure Mary was feeling overwhelmed as she traveled to Elisabeth's, look for the great things God is doing in your life. Remember He has a plan for you just as He had one for Mary and Elisabeth.
Father, thank you for all you are doing in my life. Help me to cultivate the good things and not destroy the joy with doubts and complaining. In Jesus name. Amen.
Luke 1:57-80 (vs 74,75) At the birth of John the Baptist, Zecharias called to remembrance the promise God had made to Abraham, the promise that God would deliver Israel from the hands of the enemy and they would serve God without fear in holiness and righteousness.
We who are Abraham's children by virtue of the new birth in Christ have the same promises. He will always be with us and we should serve Him without fear, trusting that He is in control and knows all we face. Isaiah 41:10
Thank you Lord, for being in control. Thank you that we can trust You to handle every matter. Help me remember "No Fear" in Jesus name. Amen.
Matthew 1:18-25 (vs19,24) Joseph thought to put her away privately. In a day when an engagement was almost as binding as a wedding, Joseph wanted to break the engagement without causing her shame or endanger her life. Mary had gone to Elisabeth's. All this seemed a good way to solve a "problem" but God had other plans.
God sometimes interrupts our lives to bring about the best plan. Though Joseph and Mary and Jesus were going to face ridicule all their lives, it was the best plan for the entire world. God loved Mary and Joseph but He loves us too. We needed Mary and Joseph to carry out God's plan. We need to rise from our sleep and let God use us in this our day - for such a time as this (Esther 4:14).
Father, help me to know how to humble myself so You can use me to further Your kingdom. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of Your plan. In Jesus name. Amen.