Closing the Gap 12.18.18

By December 18, 2018Daily Devotional

Advent Season

Week 50 Day 2

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Luke 2:1-16 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.  (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Reflect:

A virgin birth is a strange thing, but a birth is a strange thing as well.  We are used to births. They have happened billions of times. We are not used to virgin births, they have happened one time.  If throughout human history people simple suddenly appeared on earth and that was the way it had always happened it would not be strange it would be normal.  If people slowly evolved from the mud in ponds and lakes around the world and over months and years eventually became a “person” that would likewise not be strange, it would be normal.  What is strange and what is normal is tied to what is and has been. If no one had ever been born from a woman’s body and suddenly a person was born in that fashion who would believe it?  It would impossible. “People just ‘appear’ or people come from ‘mud’ but people don’t just ‘come out of a woman’, why that is absurd.” Why have many found the virgin birth absurd? Because it is not normally how people have been born.  When you start with “people” and with the idea of “normal” then you find the birth of Jesus ridiculous. But what if you start at the proper place, with God? Then ask the question…”could God do it this way if you wanted to?” The answer is “of course he could.”  Then the next question is, “is there evidence that God did bring Jesus into the world through a virgin birth?” The answer is, “yes, much evidence.” We all become used to what is normal for us, even when what is normal is fantastic. A sunset is normal, but it is fantastic.  A baby’s birth is normal, but it is fantastic. Human love is normal, but it is fantastic. What is normal for us ceases to be fantastic for us and it also limits our “vision” as to what will yet be true for us. What happened at the birth of Christ was a singularity, a one-time event. It was something that was inconceivable by the human mind.  What will happen in the future, the things that God has planned for his people are inconceivable now. We who are trapped in space and time and cannot fully conceive of anything other than what is “normal.” However as we contemplate our ultimate hope and the source of that hope, the living God, we can expand our imaginations to go beyond the “now” and the “normal.”  We can live in the “now” and “normal” with a fuller vision of our future and fantastic hope.

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

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