You Call This Favor?!
Mary was perplexed! A strange man had just entered her room and had started to talk about things like favor and God and greetings! Who is this assertive man and what in the world is he talking about?
I can nearly hear Mary’s racing heartbeat as she attempted to process all that was happening around her this day. The Bible says that “Mary was perplexed and wondered what kind of salutation this was”. Mary’s cheeks were probably flushed and her heart was beating wildly.
As the Angel Gabriel continued to tell the message of heaven to this young girl, perhaps Mary’s fear subsided and a humble awakening began to dawn in her heart. Gabriel had heaven’s perspective on this miraculous announcement and saw absolutely no reason for fear.
Sweet Mary, who was trying to wrap her heart and mind around the message of the angel may have been incredulously pondering, “Me?! God chose me?! I am the chosen one to carry God’s child? The mother of the Messiah?”
Christmas, for Mary, was about understanding that God’s ways are so much higher than our ways. Mary was learning, like all of us must, that when Divinity invades humanity ... Divinity always wins! Christmas is a reminder to me ... and to you ... and to Mary ... that His ways are always higher and better than anything that we could ever think or imagine.
Christmas has nothing to do with dancing elves, reindeer with red noses and snowmen who sing. Christmas is about an invasion! Christmas happens at the moment when heaven’s light invades the darkness of planet earth!
Christmas will always drive the worst of sinners to ponder what kind of salutation the Christmas story brings. Either Christmas is a bold-faced lie or it is ultimate truth. It can be nothing else.
Either the manger should be placed in the same category as elves, jolly old Saint Nicholas and flying reindeer ... or it is absolute, divine and eternal Truth.
Christmas is not about the holiday spirit that rushes toward us the day after Thanksgiving and compels us to shop, spend, and eat. Christmas is about the Holy Spirit bringing peace and joy through a Baby Boy to the mess that we have made of planet earth. It is about the power of heaven’s reality invading one life. Christmas commences the moment when a person realizes the longing that has always existed to be overshadowed by all that He is and all that He does!
It happened for Mary ... and it can happen for you! Perhaps an appropriate prayer to pray this Christmas would be,
“Holy Spirit! Overshadow me! Overshadow my dreams, my preferences and opinions! Birth something new and something grand in me! Create something in me that will change this generation for the Kingdom of Christ!”
Bible Reading: (please click the Scripture reference to open the reader)
Let There Be Joy In Me:
Finish this phrase: Christmas is …
Perhaps you could make a list of 10 things that “Christmas is …” to you. Ask other people this week to finish that phrase as well.
If this devotional has been an encouragement to you, would you consider giving a year-end gift to Just Joy! Ministries this Christmas season?