Wednesday, December 30, 2020

A Radical Change

 December 30, 2020

He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.  Matthew 18:2-4

A Radical Change
For Mary and Joseph, that Christmas night when they first met Jesus, was for them only the beginning!  From then on, every night, for the rest of their lives, they were with Jesus Christ!

They did have to leave Bethlehem, but they took Christ with them. We know, for instance, that they moved from Bethlehem to Egypt.  Then they moved from Egypt to Nazareth.  But they never moved without taking Jesus with them! There was one time, they slipped up and left Christ behind in Jerusalem.  But, as soon as they realized He was missing, they immediately went to find Him!  

In Christmas services around the world millions of people came to worship Jesus. But the great majority will simply leave saying, "That's nice!"  And they went on with life as usual. Only a few who, having seen Jesus Christ, determine never to leave His side again! 

We should always be aware that Christianity is not a religion...IT IS A RELATIONSHIP!  And, if we do get sidetracked and misplace the Lord in our lives, make a beeline back to Him as soon as we figure it out! 

For Joseph and Mary, Christmas was more than a once a year celebration, It was a day by day reality. Does the presence of the Messiah change things?  Only if you enter a relationship with Him. Christmas is only a holiday if you do not receive the gift of God and live in His presence. The promise of faith is peace, joy, love and salvation.  Are those now ours in experience or did we leave Bethlehem without Him?

Mary and Joseph Nurtured Their Relationship with Jesus! 
Raising Children is a growing experience!  Anyone who has raised children knows the parents grow up almost as much as the child does!   As they grow up, they change, and so do you.  A relationship requires constant attention to keep it strong! For one thing, YOU HARDLY KNOW THE CHILD THAT FIRST DAY YOU BRING HIM INTO THE HOUSE! You have to get to know that kid growing up in your home...AND THE TRUTH IS, YOU NEVER KNOW THEM FULLY! You have to learn to be a good parent. 

While the shepherds returned to their flocks... Mary and Joseph stayed there, responsible for the rest of their lives to nurture and develop their relationship with Jesus Christ!  The same is true with our relationship with Christ.  We get to know Him only a little the day we are first introduced to Him as our Savior! We are glad for the relationship, to know we are going to heaven. 

Nurturing – Completing what God has purposed
Mary and Joseph spent not only Christmas, but the rest of their lives growing in their relationship with Jesus! There are too many Christians, who are great people but THEY AREN'T GROWING ANYMORE IN CHRIST!  They know a certain amount about Christ, they are happy with what they know, AND THEY AREN'T INTERESTED IN KNOWING ANY MORE!  Now that Christmas is over, will you simply return to life as normal, perhaps praising God for the chance to celebrate Christmas, but really, no different than you were before? Or will you, like Mary and Joseph have your lives radically changed by Christmas? God has a purpose for all He does…and it will always result in a change in our lives

Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift. 2 Corinthians 9:15 (KJV)

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