Thursday, December 08, 2011
A Season of Remembering
A Season of Remembering
The wonder of the birth of Christ that will save us from ourselves. What a mystery God created with the birth of Christ. How many people really knew that Mary was carrying the child of God? We always picture that of course everyone knew and accepted that she was. I am sure that Mary and Joseph were both overwhelmed with what God was doing. He told them first of course. When the Holy Spirit shadowed Mary and the Angel appeared to Joseph, to them there was no question it was God working in their lives.
When God first speaks to you, isn’t it glorious! You stand in awe of the moment and you just “know” all this is from Him. I remember when we were trying to have a child, how discouraged I was at first because we just could not get pregnant and we had two miscarriages. How devastated I was. I will never forget the hour that God told me to trust Him. In that moment, I knew that God would bless us somehow with a child.
After the blush of the Holy Spirit and the Angel, appearing to Joseph, life settled into a routine. The glory of that moment seemed to fade as it became more apparent to everyone Mary was with child and yet not married. Can you imagine what they had to deal with? Can you imagine the jeering, the gossip, and the whispers as they both tried to walk through what God had called on them to do? The judgment from God’s own people that did not recognize the gift He was about to give to us. The gift that would cost Him so much. These two people were burdened and blessed.
Did Mary unburden her heart to anyone? Did she suffer quietly? She had answered the call of God on her life and yet, she was set aside. She was doing exactly what God asked of her but, the people of God could not see what God was about to do. She lived here on earth with people that were blind to the Spiritual things that God was trying to accomplish.
Does it sound familiar? Maybe God has put something on your heart, or called you to do something that in the earthly world does not measure up. Maybe it will cost you your reputation; your material things or maybe it will cost you your family because that can’t see the spiritual realm that God has shown you? Whatever it is, the cost is worth it. The cost of going deeper with God is more valuable than you know. Walking with Him not matter the cost took me through a life that would tear everything I knew apart. What God handed back to me, a life that I would not ever exchange. The journey hurt. The journey was painful. The reward was great! My relationship with God is so much stronger than even I knew I could have.
After my heart was truly broken, spilled out before Him I could see a new life that would call me to a much deeper spiritual calling than I had ever known before. A calling to a life that was not just a passive acknowledgement of God and His works, but participating in His work. A call to love God’s people the way He did, through His eyes. To see their hurts, burdens and pain as a place to help them grow, learn to love deeper and to walk on with a God that loves them so much because I had been there. I can feel that pain even when it is not spoken. Because I have experienced that pain. Because I have been there through tragedies and moments of crisis, I know God holds us all tightly in His hand.
We always see this time of year as Mary and Joseph head to Bethlehem and the birth of Jesus as some tender, sweet journey through two Godly people. Which they were God’s chosen parents to take care of His son. What an awesome statement of their faith. However, the journey he sent them out on was not easy and would last for 33 years. I am sure they had years that were not as hard but Jesus was God’s son. Just like Jesus, they suffered from the judgment of their peers. Their calling was now participating in God’s work. His plan that was the ultimate gift of Jesus. However, most did not understand His plan. Nevertheless, they pressed on. As Jesus died and rose again, can you imagine how Mary must have felt. The testimony she would give of her son. Because, she was His mother. Her heartbeat was with His. She loved Him so very much. That was her calling and she walked through every heartache and every comment with pride knowing she was following God.
When God blesses He also provides. Before God ever blessed Mary with Jesus, He had already made a way for her to be able to withstand the judgment of this world. He knew the heart of His own people and what Mary would endure. He knew that not everyone would accept his plan for salvation and not all would understand who Jesus was going to be in their life. He knew that their eyes were blind to the gift that would enter this world.
God knew that Mary would need strength to endure it all. That she would need Joseph to stand behind her. She would need Joseph to be her strength when she could stand it no more. When God calls you, He also provides. Each step is already been walked before you by God. He goes before us and is our rear guard.
This Christmas I remember the birth of Christ but also remember the “call” on Mary’s life. The blessing she was to raise Jesus. To teach Him and help Him along the way as He grew into the man and son of God. The bible says she pondered those things in her heart. I am so sure she did.
As I remember the walk Mary took, I look at Olivia. No, not the same story, but a calling nonetheless. The calling to take the road less traveled. A road that we have walked so many years now and is painful. God entrusted us as parents to raise her to know Him and love Him through all her pain. He entrusted us to grow and know Him on a deeper level so that we might bring Honor to Him. The stories of faith, of lives changed, of miracles in our lives and others has truly been nothing short of miracles along the way. We have fallen short many times but every time we have gotten back up, scraped the dirt off and walked on because of greatness of who God is in our lives. This year as I remember the birth of Christ I realize the true gift of being able to walk “boldly into the throne of grace” and God listening. He listens as we pray. He loves us as we pray. He stands with us as we “ask and pray.” All because Jesus chose to be born into this world and was raised from the Dead.