The Birth of Christ brought profound joy as well as grim news of a saviour who would die and rescue the world.
Mary felt Joy for Her saviour and child was born. But she also knew that he will be opposed for he’s appointed for the rise and fall of many. Luke 2.34-35.
I imagined she was sad/thorn because of the impending danger he faced early and later years in life.
Yes, Christmas morning brought both joy and sadness. And as the years rolled by Mary watched her baby the saviour slept, with teary eyes, she knew the holy one of Israel would pay for the sins of the world.
So why she was happy at his birth. The long awaited arrival of the saviour meant joy for Many, but for Mary his arrival ended her peace. Her heart felt pain each time he went out of the house.
Every time he left the house, She anticipated, she wondered at every knock, every greeting, her heart skipped a beat. Has the time come?
So for you Christmas morning may mean so many things it maybe mixed with Joy and happiness, you are here still standing, a loving partner, family and friends, a job, and hope for the future.
Or you may have lost your marriages, had another miscarriage, loss a child, received the dreaded news of blocked tubes, ageing eggs, No job, no funds. Yes Christmas came, but your reality is one of fear for the future.
On this Christmas day, let your heart be quiet and still, be reassured that you are His priced possession.
Your celebration maybe with gratitude, joy, dissatisfaction or disappointment. Just know that “you are His and He is yours”.
Christmas is more than just physical gifts it is an eternal gift of Hope, Joy, deep contentment in knowing that He who has promised will be faithful as He said:
“I will never leave you, nor will I forsake you”.That’s the true gift of ChristmasHis abiding presence with us, which is our reassuring Hope.
Today we’re going to look at BLESSINGS IN WAITING.
I think trying or waiting for a child, child loss due to miscarriage or death is one of the most terrible experiences in anyones life.
I had two miscarriages, and sometimes I wonder what my unborn children would have looked like. Had they survived what ages will they be now. I have Come to terms with these loss, but I still wonder.
Anna is an example of a woman who yearned for a baby, she cried because she felt helpless at the delays, she saw her mates bearing children she saw how they relate with those children, she observed it all, day in and day out year in and out.
Elizabeth was also an example of one who waited. These blessings in waiting causes pain, we become entangled in the daily reality of the delay that we live in.
Everyone at one time or the other have experienced joy from having their prayers answered.
Have you ever waited for something, and got it?That desire was a blessing in waiting.
There was a time you waited for a job, for mortgage, for a life partner, for financial breakthrough. They were all blessings in waiting at one time or another.
Let’s just pause and look back at those blessings in waiting which you now enjoy. I know how delays can lead us into a place of deep dissatisfaction inpatience and hopelessness.
How do you explain that after eight years of waiting? Today, those blessings in waiting are my reality. I am living and enjoying my beautiful kids but I’m still waiting I’m waiting for a healing.
While enjoying my blessings of children, I draw strength from the fact that the God who did that for me can also fulfil his promise of healing in my life.
I want you to draw strength from your current blessings while you wait for those yet to come.
When you think of Christmas and the period leading up to it, I am sure you are not thinking of variants, lockdowns and isolating. .
Lately all we read about is how far covid has spread, the various variants, numbers infected and living under the threat of lockdowns.
Christmas and the time leading up to it, use to be a time of excitement, anticipation, waiting for that gift, looking forward to carol services, the dread of secret santa, expecting friends and family for the pre- Christmas lunch/parties and post Christmas visits.
After the Christmas festivities we begin to plan for the year ahead. But the uncertainty of Covid has caused panic around the globe, the question on everyone’s lips-
“Is another lockdown coming or not”.
The present situation makes me pause and wonder about the few days before Christ birth,
How did Mary and Joseph felt at the coming of a baby at a time of great uncertainty? They had to travel to Bethlehem for the censors.
Making that journey miles away, with Mary only a few days from birth was no small feat. Only to arrive with no room anywhere in town not even in the inn, but in the manger in the inn.
The uncertainty surrounding Christ birth is nothing compared to what we face today.
Mary must have uttered a silent prayer to God. “Remember us lord” Help us God”.“Protect us God”.
I am sure she did, because they had to flee a few days after his birth, on the run to save His life. She must have constantly prayed for safety carrying the promised child.
You too may have had your procedure cancelled or postponed, or maybe expecting after a long wait and living under the uncertainty of what the future holds for you and your child. Under the threat of Covid and other external factors.
During times of stress and distress we often cry out for help, we ask God the higher power for intervention, to step in and often he does.
Just like He stepped into Rachel’s situation and she became pregnant. God stepped in and saved Jesus from being slaughtered.
He will remember you and step in.
He does and has not forgotten you, he knows your name, your situation and location.
Draw near to him now and stay close, and be enclosed in His peace. He will come and he will help you.
Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” Luke 2:14
In our previous posts I wrote about Rachel and how God remembered her. often we make statements like ”God remembered me”.
But does God forget? That’s the question. Has he forgotten about you?
God is not human and does not forgets like humans beings does.
But often we use the word “God has remembered me”. Usage of that word suggests there is a flaw in God. A human flaw of forgetfulnesses.
Man is fallible so, man forgets. But God is not a human that he should forget, right? Nor a human that he should lie, has he said it and will he not do it?
Let me Put it to you that God does forgets. Yes he does. He forgets your sins. He himself said “I will remember their sins no more”. So here, God deliberately forgets and erase your sins from His memories. So when He looks at you He sees you clean.
Earlier on in my quest for a child I went through various scenarios, of times when I may have done somethings for which I was atoning for. It could be anything but the guilt of it all stacks up even more when I couldn’t fall pregnant.
I knew I was forgiven, I knew the delay was not a result of things I may have done. I just couldn’t stop thinking there was something that is causing the delay. I wanted an answer and maybe you do too. It’s so easy to find a reason to hold on to. Hence we blame it on some past wrong doings.
We sometimes think that there is an underlining deep spiritual message that God was trying to send us?
God did not keep the receipt, He clears the hard drive and every backup copy, He destroyed them. He does not remember my sins. He Forgot.
So I want to challenge you today to take whatever mistakes you think you have made, use an erase-able pan or a pencil Stack them up.
write what you remember one by one,
Put a strike next to them.
Scribble over them.
Then use the eraser and rob them out.
Finally rip the paper.
Do the same on your computer/Ipad or smart phone.
start typing out all the things you think you may have done wrong,
then press the back button or highlight them and
then delete it all without saving.
This is what God did.
He deleted, he erased, then ripped up the evidence. He doesn’t remember your sins because when you ask for his forgiveness he just erase it. He wiped the slate clean, he cannot remember and see you as new when he looks at you.
So the next time you think the delays you are experiencing is because of some past sins, some jealousy, habits or other horrible stuff, Just Remember, He doesn’t remember your sins.
You are forgiven, washed and cleaned and you have put on Christ As Paul said, so each time you pray he sees Christ. Not your sins.
He sees His son whom he sent as a baby a long time ago to come and cover you, to come and stand in your place on the cross.
Now you are dressed in righteousness and faultless to stand before His throne. That’s who you are, faultless. So come boldly thanking him, for his forgetfulness.
In his book God came near, Max Lucado wrote. Do yourself a favour purge your cellar . Exorcise your basement. Take the Roman nails of Calvary and board up the door.
This season is one of giving, retail outlets expects this to be a profitable season as shoppers look for that perfect gift for their families and friends.
I have seen some stunning gift wrapping techniques which puts to shame my limp attempt at wrapping . I am consoled by this saying “it’s the thought that counts, not the wrapping”.
This is so true, I have never seen anyone who decides not to unwrap their gift simply because the wrapping paper was too pretty. Without fail, adults and kids immediately tear into the wrapper hoping to find something of worth, something they imagined, or something unexpected.
Christ was an unexpected gift, although he was a promised king he was not a longed waited child. So His birth and everything surrounding it was unimagined.
Who would have imagined angels will appear to shepherds announcing his arrival?
Who would have imagined God will choose a teenage girl to use as a vessel via which a saviour will come.
Who would have imagined that Herod will be so cruel as to kill innocent children because he feared what that child will become?
Who would have imagined he would come, walk amongst men and perform so many miracle.
Who would have imagined this “King”, would die willingly and rise again?
Everything about his arrival, life, death and resurrection was unimaginable, which makes Christmas special.
As you wait for your own arrival one day. I am sure you have imagined the moment you find out you are expecting, you have imagined how your child will look, imagined their first steps, smile etc.
But God’s promise are unimaginable, even your best imagination has not yet imagined what God has in store for you..
How reassuring it is that we can’t out imagine God, His ways are past finding out.
As you wait and expect your burden of Joy, know that your eyes have not seen, your ears have not heard, neither your heart considered or imagined what God has in store for you.
What would you consider the most memorable time of your life?
Was it when you got married, got your degree, moved houses, got a new job? received a long expected news?
These are all great achievements to be celebrated but cannot be regarded as moments of splendor.
Moments of splendor was when an angel appeared to Mary and the wise men to tell of the birth of Jesus. They fell on their feet and worshiped. As the songs “the angel of the lord came down and glory shone around”.
I sometimes wondered what that moment was like for Mary and the shepherds: Some described their reaction as one of fear, but I think they were dazed, speechless and yes felt fearful, reverential fear.
This advent as you wait on your promise I pray that you will experience a moment of splendor in the revealing of whom Jesus His. May the power which came upon Mary Come on you and strengthened your body to conceive.
Moments of splendor, released by sparkling lights, Of angel piercing the skies, announcing the birth of our savior.
Moments of splendour it was as the angel said Fear not, good news is come Of a saviour born today In Bethlehem.
Such splendour thrills my heart. O the wonder of his birth, to see the glory of Christ our king.
Moments of splendour which brings hope. To know He came to be bruised, to be scorned, to be wounded.
That I might be made whole. In this my faith rest and my heart assured of His promise to me.
The birth of Jesus was told over 680 years before he was actually born. God told the prophet Isaiah that a saviour would be born to a virgin mother. That didn’t happen for hundreds of years after the promise was given.
Did God forget to do what he told Isaiah? No.
Did he change his mind? No.
Did he make a mistake? No
I often wonder weather Isaiah felt despondent about the fulfilment of that promise.
God told him something, he knew it was God talking to him. Yet he did not see it fulfilled in his lifetime.
Isaiah must have felt unhappy, sad, and questioned if he had actually heard from God. I imagined that he even doubted what God said, would happen.
His feelings didn’t stop or delay the promise because when God says a thing, he always bring it to pass regardless of the time. Because he’s working on his timeline not on ours.
Isaiah’s doubt did hinder God. Of course we were not told that he felt this way, this is my imagination. I believe as a human being, he may have felt some form of disappointment at not seeing the promise come to pass.
So let me encourage you as you continue to wait for what you’ve heard God said to you, your doubts, discouragement, tears and even your seemingly faithlessness will not stop God because His promises will always come to pass. He is not a man that he should lie.
Just hold on, for Just like the Christmas story came to pass and a miracle baby was born hundreds of years after he was promised, so will your promise child be born in your lifetime because God is faithful.
Isaiah was the prophet God used by to foretell of his coming son. Be encouraged, that which you have been promised will come to pass.
The story of Christmas is about Jesus coming as a baby. I have written about how the festivities surrounding this time of the year isn’t the reason he came.
One of the reasons he came was to step in to our world, to experience what it is like to be human.
The expression walking in someone’s else’s shoe is so apt here.
The Christ of Christmas came and lived amongst us, saw you in your world, your ache, your pain of waiting, witness the ache you felt from loss.
Saw you in the hospital gown as you wait for yet another egg extraction and another retriever, saw the pain of negative test etched on your face.
He came to your world and saw you and he knows the sadness loss, delays and disappointments brings, he knows how you feel right now. Because he experienced those same feelings too, while here on earth.
His life here on earth wasn’t palatable because even before he drew his first breath as a human, he was despised and rejected.
But Because he loves you and wants to show His love in the most insane way possible, he stepped into your world and walked where you are today.
As you continue in your own journey of trying, stop and think about this knowledge, he knows.
Be encouraged with this hope, comfort and assurance.
Because the reality is that he too left the comfort of His palace and came as a helpless baby. Galatians 3:4-5.
Think about it.
For me he came. O a love so pure and true. That a king would come for me. O the wonder of it, I will never know.