‘Tis The Season

‘Tis the season for singing Christmas carols.
‘Tis the season for celebration of faith, hope and love.
‘Tis the season when angels get a bit more mention and attention.

Angels have been actively engaged with humankind since the beginning of time. In Luke 1:26-38 there is mention of exactly this, the angel Gabriel engages in conversation with Mary. Excerpts here are taken from the Passion Translation.

“A mighty and powerful angel named Gabriel was sent from God’s presence to an unmarried girl named Mary. Gabriel appeared to her and said, ‘Grace to you, young woman, for the Lord is with you and so you are anointed with great favour.’

Mary was deeply troubled over the words of the angel and bewildered over what this may mean for her. But the angel reassured her, saying, ‘Do not yield to your fear Mary, for the Lord has found delight in you and has chosen to surprise you with a wonderful gift. You will become pregnant with a baby boy, and you are to name him Jesus. He will be supreme and will be known as the Son of the Highest. And the Lord God will enthrone him as King on his ancestor David’s throne. He will reign as King of Israel forever, and his reign will have no limit.

Then Mary responded, saying, ‘This is amazing! I will be a mother for the Lord! As his servant, I accept whatever he has for me. May everything you have told me come to pass.’ And the angel left her.”

The above Bible passage not only mentions but brings attention to a powerful angel who is talking to a very ordinary and yet very special young woman. He starts the conversation with a very positive, matter of fact statement.

Mary is afraid /deeply troubled just in hearing this very positive greeting. She doesn’t know yet what is about to be said so what could she be afraid of? What would you or I be thinking or afraid of if we were in the same position? It seems obvious that the mighty angel could see/knew she was afraid so he reassured her that she did not have to give in to her fear whatever that may have been. In fact, his message was even more uplifting. He told her that the Lord found delight in her and that the Lord Himself is with her. She is not alone. So it is that we are not alone either. God Himself is with us and he finds delight in us. We do not have to give in to our fear. Mary replaced her fear with faith and in turn she received hope. So we too can replace our fears with faith in God and in turn we can receive hope.

He also told her that she is anointed with great favour. She has been chosen by God to deliver a powerful message in the form of a person—the one and only Jesus Christ, Messiah and Savior of all humankind. Mary discovered that she was loved. She learned that she was cared for. Gabriel provided the Lord’s specific direction and guidance by telling her that she was to name the baby Jesus.

As Mary relaxed, let go of her unfounded fear, she was able to take in and process the news the angel Gabriel brought her. Then she got excited and she seemed to have great insight in to what this news really meant. “This is amazing! I will be a mother for the Lord! As his servant, I accept whatever he has for me. May everything you have told me come to pass.” And the angel left her. She accepted and embraced her assigned position as the woman who would bring the Son of God as the greatest Gift for humans. She also had the insight to know that her position in relation to the Son of God was a place of humility and that she was not greater than He. He is the supreme authority.

There is a Christmas song called, Mary, did you know? You may know it and if not listen to it when the Christmas music plays.
Some of the lyrics go like this: ‘Mary did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you’ve delivered, will soon deliver you. Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
That sleeping child you’re holding is the great I Am!’

Do you think Joseph knew that this baby boy would one day make him new?
Do you think Joseph knew that this baby boy is Lord of all creation.
Do you know that Jesus has come to make you new?
Do you know that He will deliver you from fears?
Friend, do you know?
You and I are very ordinary and yet very special people, did you know?

O Holy Child of Bethlehem
Descend to us, we pray
Cast out our sin and enter in
Be born to us today
We hear the Christmas angels
The great tidings tell
O come to us, abide with us
Our Lord Emmanuel

‘Tis the season to remember Jesus, who IS the reason for this season!

Submitted by Leslie and Ray Johnson
for Resurrection Life Ministries to the Carberry News Express for 2019


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