The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you. Luke 1. 28
Good Monday Morning to this week 51/2018
With Christmas a week away, discovering the real Christmas message requires looking beyond the all-too-familiar holiday experiences. “Was there a moment, known only to God, when all the stars held their breath, when the galaxies paused in their dance for a fraction of a second, and all His love was poured into Mary as she fell into favor with God.
Key statements we read again and again:
“God with Us” In Exodus, God appeared over us, in the cloud, as a pillar of fire, or on the mountain. But now, in a common feeding trough, He became Immanuel
“Good News of Great Joy” The good news transcended politics, languages, and geography. A Savior is given to all mankind, making us the recipients of
God’s good will and favor.
“Lying in a Manger” We must marvel at the humble entrance of the Eternal, Almighty Creator, God, into our world. The Savior of mankind, found lying in a manger, a (feeding-trough), thus giving the shepherds a specific sign to guide them to the Christ-Child.
In the world that God created, there was no room for Him at the inn or anywhere. To have “God with us,” the God-Child entered the world in a place where few would even notice.
God’s return in Jesus to His creation wasn’t “good news” to everyone. No ruler was willing to abdicate their throne. No palace opened their gates to welcome the King of kings or the Prince of Peace.
God, who is omnipotent, omnipresent, and all-righteous, longed to touch everyone — the beggar, the prostitute, the leper — presenting Himself, a helpless infant, “lying in a manger.” Common folks can never visit the palace of a newborn king, uninvited. But kings and princes can visit mangers.
The Nativity scene isn’t designed “only” to put us into a festive “holiday mood.” It should stir us to the very depth of our souls. How will we respond to the Divine Designer of the universe who sacrificed everything to bring us back into a relationship with Him!
And Mary said in Luke 1: 46-55 from The Message:
I’m bursting with God-news;
I’m dancing the song of my Savior God.
God took one good look at me, and look what happened—
I’m the most fortunate woman on earth!
What God has done for me will never be forgotten,
the God whose very name is holy, set apart from all others.
His mercy flows in wave after wave
on those who are in awe before him.
He bared his arm and showed his strength,
scattered the bluffing braggarts.
He knocked tyrants off their high horses,
pulled victims out of the mud.
The starving poor sat down to a banquet;
the callous rich were left out in the cold.
He embraced his chosen child, Israel;
he remembered and piled on the mercies, piled them high.
It’s exactly what he promised,
beginning with Abraham and right up to now.
Wishing a great week in these waves of His mercy!