Are you getting ready for Christmas? I don’t know about you, but every year I get caught off guard with all the preparation to get ready for Christmas! It seems no matter how much I plan, there is always something to get ready for.
The busyness of Christmas can be distracting and overwhelming to our hearts because of all the extra stress the holidays add to our plates. Before we know it we are missing out on the very reason why we celebrate Christmas.
You Are Known And Loved.
A prophet named Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel (God with us)” (Isa. 7:13-14).
In the verse above, the Prophet Isaiah was preparing our hearts for the arrival of Jesus.
Have you ever felt not seen or heard?
Two thousand years ago a peasant girl named Mary might have felt this way until …….
Luke 1:26-35….”God sent the angel…to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary….
Mary was just a young peasant girl who was about to be married. Why would God choose her? The angel Gabriel tells Mary, “Do not be afraid, you have found favor with God” (Luke 1:30). The Greek word for highly favored is charis which means grace.
God had found favor in Mary and bestowed a special honor on her. God sent an angel to prepare Mary’s heart for God’s greater plan.
Gabriel, the angel prepares Mary’s heart, that she will be with child and his name will be Jesus.
Gabriel goes even further and tells Mary five things about her future son.
1. He will be great. Luke 1:32
2. He will be called the Son of the Most High. Luke 1:32
3. He will be given the throne of His father David. Luke 1:32
4. He will reign in the house of Jacob forever. Luke 1:33
5. His kingdom will never end. Luke 1:33
“How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” (Luke 1:34). This is what I love about Mary. She doesn’t question the fact that the Messiah is coming, but rather that she would be used as a vessel for his arrival, a young virgin peasant girl.
She didn’t doubt or question God’s plan, instead asked how will this even be possible since she is a virgin?
The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you…” (Luke 1:35).
I don’t know about you, but I want a heart like Mary’s. A heart that is ready to trust and receive God’s promises. Mary’s heart welcomed the angel’s message, by submitting her heart almost immediately after hearing his message!
She didn’t let her doubts or fears get in the way of God’s plan. She allowed for God’s greater plan to happen through her, by submitting her heart to God.
How wise was Mary’s heart to recognize this message could have only come from God Himself?
Mary heard the message of God’s promise, and her heart of faith was reassured by the words, “For nothing is impossible with God” (Luke 1:37). She even uttered the words, “I am the Lord’s servant, May it be to me as you have said” (Luke 1:38). No wonder God found favor with Mary. God already knew Mary’s heart before He chose her.
I want a heart like Mary’s.
Can you imagine if Mary didn’t allow for God’s greater plan to happen and allowed her doubts and fears to get in the way instead?
Have you ever allowed your doubts and fears get in the way of God’s greater plan?
I have many times. I wonder how many times has God sent me a message I didn’t recognize was from him. Letting me know I am known and loved and I just ignored Him?
Friend, you are known and loved by God who loved you first. This Christmas before we allow busyness and distractions to take us away from the true meaning of Christmas, let’s stop and allow God to prepare our hearts for His greater plan.
There is a fullness of joy when we stay present in the presence of Jesus. We can rest assured—that His peace will fill our hearts with JOY and will fill our souls with PEACE, when we allow for God’s greater plan to happen through us.
Do you struggle with being known and loved by God?
If God sent an angel with a message to you, “Do not be afraid.” Would you go where God was asking you to go?
Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you God for your greater plan. Thank you God for Jesus and preparing a place in heaven for us. We pray we will have a heart like Mary’s, one that is obedient, faithful and trusting of your plan even when we don’t understand. Prepare our hearts Lord for your greater promises. We pray we will not get in the way of your plan but allow your greater plan to happen through us. We pray for your will and ways to be done on earth as it is in heaven. Help us not be afraid like Mary and allow for your greater promises to fill our hearts. Help us stay present in your presence this Christmas and focus on the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of Jesus. In Jesus name, Amen.
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