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Christmas Began


Hope – Luke 1:26-56

Where does your hope come from?

…some of you might have to look this one up.

Good King Wenceslas phoned Domino’s for a pizza.
The salesgirl asked him:
‘Do you want your usual? Deep pan, crisp and even?’

Hello everyone!  The songs are now on the radio 24/7.  Lights are up around all of our neighborhoods.  Tree farms are busy with families wanting to find the perfect evergreen.  Parents are watching their email for the UPS confirmation that the package is on its way.  Cookie cutters are out and in full use.  Kid’s wish lists are out and being revised nightly as new commercials hit the airwaves.  It can get busy…can’t it?

It all started here though.  Luke 1:26-56.  An angel was told, “The time has come, Gabriel.  Go and talk to Mary.”  Can you imagine God’s feeling?  Here it is.  The final piece of His Master Plan.  The Gospel is nearly complete.  Not only the ‘good news,’ but now the best news is about to be spread across humanity…His creation.  I guess I like looking at Christmas this way cause…wow, doesn’t it just make you smile?!  The best gift ever given is about to be handed to whoever wants it.  And He’s hoping everyone will accept it.

Mary.  She is on the receiving end of the most important news that Gabriel has probably ever carried for his Master.  Gabriel.  He gets to say the words, “You will have a son…God’s son….The redeemer of all mankind.”  As he finishes his message and leaves, I wonder what he felt.  He had just begun the process through which evil would be defeated for good.  Talk about having butterflies in your belly and a giddy smile on your face.  I can’t imagine the emotion!

And then, Mary is left alone…not quite alone…but in her own thoughts, to come to grasp with this.  She is the one who will be mommy to the savior of the world.  Yes, I would be scared out of my socks.  God is hoping that we accept His gift.  Mary is hoping this message is true.

Hope.  Do you have it?  Where’s it come from?  Can we lose it?  How do we get it?  I’m sure that Mary had those doubts rise up.  “I didn’t really see an angel.”  “I know my ancestry.  It matches.  But could it be?”  “Joseph isn’t going to believe me.”  “How?”  But all these questions and doubts and troubles can be pushed to the side because the news is from a Holy God who has never missed a beat.  He’s never broken a promise.  He’s never given up on His people.  With that news, this can make sense.  It is logical.  It’s not at all outside of His character.  Because we can see it like that, we see how Mary mustered up Hope.  Hope wasn’t about her.  It was all about the God she knew personally…they were friends.

Does your hope falter?  Does your hope rely on your smarts or success?  Does your hope rely on someone else…a friend, a boss, a relative?  Or does your hope reside in the One who is perfect and always has been?  He has a track record to believe in.  I’m sure that’s what kept Mary going.  She had been told the stories…she had told the stories…about this God who was hers.  She knew Him…not just about Him.  Hope was fixed.  She had peace.  I’m sure when it was settled in her heart, she felt just like Gabriel…some butterflies in her stomach and a giddy grin on her face.

God was finally coming to his people…

Love-Serve-Spread the Word,

Ed

PS – Merry Christmas!  God sent love down so we could find life!

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