Friday, December 24, 2010

I WONDER AS I WANDER

THE CELEBRATION OF THE BIRTH OF JESUS, THE MESSIAH, is soon upon us. May we all come to ponder anew the birth of the One who would take away the sins of the world. (1 John 3:5)

A couple of days ago I woke with the Christmas carol, "I Wonder as I Wander" running through my head. It's been a long time since I have sung that Christmas hymn, but the opening stanza has continued to run through my mind.
I wonder as I wander out under the sky, How Jesus the Savior did come for to die. For poor on'ry people like you and like I... I wonder as I wander out under the sky
I am one who is prone to wander. I wander with Jesus, trying to comprehend the mystery of God taking on flesh, Emmanuel, God with us! (Philippians 2:6-7 and Matthew 1:23) Sadly, sometimes I wander apart from Jesus, the Savior. Needless to say, those are not good "wanderings."

But today I am wondering about this One born to save. What was it like for the eternal God to put on the bindings of human flesh? What was it like for the One who has lived in light inexpressible to now walk in the place of great darkness? It is truly a wonder to ponder!

I invite you to take time this Advent season to stop and ponder anew what the Almighty can do. As you wander the malls and halls, as you wander over the hill and through the woods to grandma's house, take time to experience the wonder that is Emmanuel, God with us. The Christ-Child, born to die, for you and for me.

Blessed Christmas to you!


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Friday, December 10, 2010

What are You Getting and Giving for Christmas?

JOY! It's part of Christmas! The angel declared, "I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people." (Luke 2:10) That joy was to be something more than a pleasurable feeling, it was intrinsically linked to a person, namely Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah, the Son of God. (Luke 2:11)

Last week, in my sermon, I spoke of about "Getting the Gifts We Need." The gift we looked at last Sunday was the gift of God's peace, again it was more that just the "peaceful easy feeling that wont let you down," rather it is about a relationship with the One who is the Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

This week I will again be dealing with the topic of getting the gifts we need, and as you probably already noted we will be discussing the gift of God's joy.

One of the things I have discovered while studying is that one of the attributes of the joy that comes from a relationship with Jesus Christ, is that this joy motivates us to serve. In fact, as we serve others, often in the less the happy situations of life, our joy increases. I guess somehow this relates to Nehemiah 8:10 that states "the joy of the LORD is our strength."

I was thinking about joy and service, or better stating joy and sacrificial giving to other when I was given a link to a powerful video interview about a man who sought to serve the very least of society. He crossed social, cultural and economic barrier in order to joyfully give to the "least of these." (Matthew 25:40)

I was challenged and humbled by this man's selfless giving. The title of the piece is, "We Could All Learn Something from this Guy." I encourage you to watch it. And may we all be motivated to share the joy that is our in and through the Person of Jesus Christ.
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