spiritualsnippets.com

Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

No Tree This Year

Galatians 4:4- “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.”

 

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For several reasons, we decided not to put up a Christmas Tree this year.

Instead, the focal point in our living room is a lovely pottery Nativity which was painted by my sister-in-law more than three decades ago. We have displayed it for many, many Christmases.

The cow no longer has one of his horns. The saddle on one of the camels, one ear of the donkey, and the face of the shepherd boy have been chipped over the years.

The nativity may not look quite as beautiful as it once did, but I am enjoying it more than ever before.

I guess it was only natural to spend so much time and effort on our trees in the past. After all, it takes hours to place the lights and ornaments on it just so. Then there’s arrangement of the tree skirt and the placement of the packages underneath…

But, as I said, this year our focus is on the Nativity: Mary, Joseph, the babe in the manger, the Wise Men and the Shepherds, the livestock, and the Angel which appears to be hovering overhead.

God planned the redemption of humankind and, at just the right time, he sent his son, Jesus, into the world. God in the flesh, born in a stable and lying in a manger.

The story gets more beautiful with time. Nothing chipped, cracked, or missing.

The birth of our Lord in the fulness of time.

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What If Jesus Were Born Today?

 

6439494977_17f82094aeLuke 2:10-14~ “And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

 

A brilliant star guided the Wise Men and Shepherds to the actual place where baby Jesus rested. Angels filled the night sky, their songs of praise directed to God.

Without the technology we have in the world today, news of the miraculous birth was a good deal slower than what we are used to.

So, what might it be like if Jesus were born today?

First of all, he would probably be born in a hospital, with Mary being released to go home the following day. Soft blankets, a mobile over the crib, and an economy box of disposable diapers would be necessities.

Mary would sit in a rocking chair next to the changing table and rock Jesus to sleep while Joseph stands in the doorway contemplating just how much their lives had changed in the last twenty-four hours. He’d wonder just how he was going to maintain their privacy when the news got out about the birth of God’s son.

Later, hearing a noise outside, Joseph would flinch when he looked out the window to see a crowd already gathering. The offers for the first photo would start pouring in, somewhere around six digits. Maybe more.

Mary would ask for some supplies from the grocery store, and Joseph would come up with an ingenious plan to escape the horde of reporters, retrieve the needed items, and sneak back into their apartment undetected.

The weeks and years to follow would be spent dodging the paparazzi.

Yes, the news would travel fast via texts, tweets, instagrams, Facebook stories, reports on the Evening News—even U-Tube Videos on his first birthday.

We can use our imaginations to suppose what his life might be like from that point on. Speaking engagements…guest appearances on late night television…maybe even a miniseries…

But, the point is this. Would we have believed that the son of God had been born on earth—that he had come to save people from their sins—any more than the Jewish aristocracy of their day believed it? After all, the Messiah they were looking for was a warrior—a conquerer—not a lowly peasant boy. So, would we believe that an ordinary-looking boy from a lower-middle class family could possibly be God’s son or would we attempt to explain it away as another instance of “Fake News?”

What would it take for us to believe? The recorded words that would turn out to be the best-selling book of all time? A documentary, perhaps?

Maybe footage from a surveillance camera showing Jesus talking to God? Or a Dateline exclusive interview in which Jesus describes what his life was like in Heaven and why he was willing to become human and die on a cross so that we might be reconciled to God?

Would his picture be displayed in our churches? Would he be invited to preach sermons there?

It’s interesting to speculate, isn’t it?

I am sure of only one thing: if he were to be born today, the result would be the same. There would be those who would reject Him; those who would embrace Him.

The truth, however, would still be the truth: He came to do the work The Father sent him to do.

He’d still be the Messiah…Immanuel, God with us.

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King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

Philippians 2: 9-11  Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the Glory of God the Father.

 

In the popular movie, “Titanic”, Leonardo DiCaprio stands on the bow of the ship and shouts with outstretched arms, “I’m the King of the World!” If you’ve seen the movie, you can picture the huge smile on his face and relive those moments with him.

Of course, Leo wasn’t really “King of the World” any more than my husband was when he and his friends used to play “King of the Hill” in their neighborhood. However, one can imagine what a wonderful “mountaintop” experience it would be!

Let’s remember, in this season, the one true “King of the World”—Jesus. He came as a lowly babe, son of a carpenter. Yet, this beloved of the Father was given a name above all names. All hail, King Jesus!

The Bible tells us that some day in the future, every knee will bow before Him. He will ultimately be recognized by all human beings as “King Above All Kings and Lord Above All Lords.”

Isn’t it a miracle—above all miracles— that Jesus has taken up His abode in us? That we don’t have to wait for that “someday” in future, but can experience His presence in our lives today?

Let’s bow before Him. Crown Him “King of Our Lives.” Give Him the recognition He deserves.

Relive with the angels that exhilarating experience in the skies over the stable in Bethlehem. Along with the heavenly host, proclaim the birth of “The King of Kings!”

Brenda

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Lost and Found

Luke 15:8– “What woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost’.”

Last week, I lost the cross necklace I had just written about in my blog. I reached up to straighten it’s chain and it was gone. I checked in our bed, the shower, the car, and on the floor of every room in the house. It just wasn’t there. I was devastated!

Yes, I did have another cross I could wear, but I had worn the “lost” cross for more than 15 years. It was precious to me.

“Please God, let me find it!” I asked, fervently. I prayed for Him to shine his light on it…to guide us to wherever it was. Two days later, I rejoiced with a friend when my husband found it atop a roll of carpet we had pulled up in our renovation, glistening as the late morning sun shined on it through a dusty window.

I thought of the lady in the Bible who went around her house looking everywhere for a lost coin. She had other coins, too, but she lit her lamp and rejoiced when she found her lost silver coin. She even called her friends to let them know.

The verse following Luke15:8, above, reminds us that “…there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” You and I were the reason for their rejoicing at one time. When we tell others of His love and forgiveness of sins, and they come to Christ, the angels will rejoice with us in their salvation, too!

What better day, than today, to ask God to shine His light onto the heart of a relative or friend? We can all rejoice together that the one that was once lost is, now, “found”!

Brenda

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