As you celebrated Jesus’ birth by exchanging gifts, did you remember that God’s presence with us is the greatest gift we will ever receive?
Thank God for his presence. Express your feelings about following God despite your fear.
Take some time each day this week to thank God for the ways he is cleansing you.
Even though these men stood at a distance, Jesus saw them. Jesus made a choice to see these men.
Have you ever sensed yourself waiting for Jesus to arrive into a situation or season of your life?
Leave this quiet time in peace, knowing that it is not your job to restore your own soul, and that you never leave the Shepherd’s presence.
Thank God for the blessings of your day. Ask God for guidance as you live the rest of your day. And leave this quiet time in peace knowing you never leave the Shepherd’s presence.
The “wine” that we bring to any situation will eventually run out. It’s not a matter of “if” but “when.” We will get tired. We will get frustrated. We will start to doubt our ability to pull something off. We will want to quit. Some of us have amazing amounts of discipline and will power and can push ourselves for a long time. Others of us have a track record of petering out at the first sign of difficulty. But eventually, we all run out of whatever we brought to the party.
Pay attention to the moments where you are quick to show faith and the places where fear tends to creep in. For a lot of us, faith and fear come in patterns. When fear shows up it is a sign that God has work to do in that place. Celebrate where you are being faithful but don’t hide or minimize the places where fear is still leading.
I’m going to call Martha’s the honest approach. She doesn’t stand back and say things like, “Well you must have needed another angel.” Or “It must have been your will.” She looks him right in the eye and tells him exactly what she is thinking. “You let me down. You did not do what I asked you to do. You could have stopped this from happening.” And the thing she doesn’t say but is clearly communicating is “I thought you loved us.”
I’m guessing that the disciples and other people around Jesus all sucked their breath in and waited for the wrath that was surely about to fall on Martha’s head. You can’t talk that way to God… can you?