Jesus, The One and Only

Aren’t you glad the Lord listens!  Aren’t you glad the Lord answers!  That’s relationship :)  It’s very difficult to have one without the other in any relationship!

Don’t know about you but it’s very frustrating when there seems this tension in relationships sometimes when it appears that people listen but they don’t answer?  In those instances of constant ignoring, we may remove ourselves because it appears to be no relationship at all :(

There is one constant in our lives and that’s that the Lord listens to our cries, He answers and He is the constant in an inconsistent world.

“After 3 days, they found Him in the temple complex sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions … and all those who heard Him were astounded at His understanding and His answers” (Luke 2:46-47)  Not only does Christ speak but He listens!  And there is nothing wrong about asking questions… apparently intelligent and full of wisdom that others were astounded at His wisdom and His answers!

What’s on your heart today that you want to share with the Lord?  After you let Him know, now listen and hear what He says!  That’s relationship :)

Vicky

Jesus was circumcised on the 8th day according to tradition and custom.  “Then they presented Him at the temple and offered the sacrifices required of new parents.’  ‘Ultimately they would fulfill the prophetic representation of three rituals:  circumcision, redemption and purification.’”(1)

Luke 2:22 “When the days of their purification according to the Law of Moses were finished, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord.”

1) The Rite of Circumcision – Gen. 17:1-14 was “a sign of the covenant between me and you.’  ‘The rite of circumcision was God’s way of requiring the Jewish people to become physically different because of their relationship to Him.’” (2)  This would also refer to our spiritual circumcision.

2)  The Rite of Redemption – Leviticus 12:1-8 “a woman was to wait 33 days after circumcision before presenting a son at the temple.’  ‘The redemption was a reminder that ‘the Lord brought us out of Egypt with his mighty hand (vs. 16)’ ‘Like all devout Jewish parents, they presented their infant to the Lord to depict sacrifice and redemption.’” (3)  Jesus would one day redeem all of us and one day in a “spiritual sense after rebirth, we would be “sons” of God.”

Isn’t it interesting that after circumcision 33 days had to pass before being presented at the temple?  Jesus’ ministry was 33 years long.  As you continue to read through Beth’s observations do you see any other parallels? 

3) The Rite of Purification – Titus 2:14 tells us that Jesus Christ “gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own.” 

“The Word made flesh first entered the temple wrapped in a baby blanket.  His earthly parents lifted Him to His Father and, in essence, purchased Him from heaven – for a while – for a lost world.  One day that baby would buy them from earth for the glory of heaven.” (4)

Beautiful!

 Vicky

1-4 / Jesus, 90 Days with the One and Only / Beth Moore / B & H Publishing

 
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Luke 2:19

“But Mary was treasuring up all these things in her heart and meditating on them.” NIV

“Mary continued to think about these things, trying to understand them.” ERV

Can you imagine what had to be going through Mary and Joseph after giving birth to Jesus!  There are a couple of instances in scripture where Mary “treasures” and “meditates” on what was happening.   In this case, there were so many things to think about and shepherds were showing up because they were also told of the magnificent birth.   In her wildest imagination could she comprehend what life held in store for all of them? 

Most new parents plan and prepare before the birth of their child and today they can find out the sex of the child and get 3D images!  Think how conditions may have been almost 2,000 years ago without all the conveniences of modern technology that we have today.  Family and friends gather round at the birth of our children, but in this case total strangers are showing up!  

What exactly did Mary treasure up and mediate on?  You may or may not be pregnant today, but what do you treasure up and mediate on daily?  Do you ever ask yourself if you can be trusted with what God has given you?  Have you ever had the opportunity to stand on a promise that God has given you and trusted Him enough to treasure the promise and mediate on it?

Sometimes focusing on problems and circumstances draw us in and we treasure and mediate on those things.  If that’s happening today, turn it around.  Treasure and meditate on the promises that God has put within in and wait for the perfect timing that He will bring it forth.

Blessings,

Vicky

 “Whether or not Mary and Joseph planned Christ’s birth this way, God certainly did.  One of my favorite phrases in the birth narrative is humbly tucked in Luke 2:6:  ‘While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born.’  The time.  The time toward which all “time” had been ticking since the kingdom clock struck one… ‘The time came!  God’s voice broke through the barrier of the natural realm through the cries of an infant!” (1)

God’s timing is always perfect and always on time! 

And while the Christ child is being born in a stable, the shepherds are in their field tending to the flock and behold an angel appears to them and says “Don’t be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all people.” (vs 10) and the “glory of the Lord shone around them”!  Isn’t it interesting and beautiful that the angels of the Lord appear to some of the most unassuming people of all times!   

“The untouchable Hand of God reaching down to touch the fallen hand of man.”(2)

“I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  Today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David.  This will be the sign for you:  You will find a baby wrapped snugly in cloth and lying in a feeding trough.  Suddenly, there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying”

Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to people He favors”

HAVE A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

Vicky

(1-2) Jesus, The One and Only / Beth Moore / B & H Publishing

In continuing our story… The angel tells Mary that the “Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.  So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God”.  (Luke 1:34-35 NIV)  Also, the angel tells Mary her cousin Elizabeth, who was in her old age and unable to conceive, was in her 6th month of her pregnancy!!   Mary knew that what the angel told her was true and rushed to Elizabeth’s house in Judea.  Upon her arrival and greeting Elizabeth, “the baby leaped in Elizabeth’s womb, and she was filled with the Holy Spirit.” (vs. 42)

I can only imagine the excitement and some of the apprehension Mary must have felt, not to mention what Elizabeth had gone through since she was already 6 months pregnant.  The best I can relate at times that I know the Lord has done something on my behalf or shared with me and I want to go tell someone… someone who could understand what I had just experienced.  How about you?

When the baby leaps in Elizabeth’s womb, she proclaims over Mary “blessed are you among women and blessed is the child you will bear!” (vs. 42)  Then Elizabeth says “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” (vs. 45)

There are so many great, wonderful, powerful and extraordinary scriptures in the bible but this one has become one of my absolute all time favorites. 

“Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her!”

Previously in vs. 38 Mary tells the angel before he departs from her after that initial meeting, that “I am the Lord’s servant.  May your word to me be fulfilled!”  Mary knew that she could trust what she had heard from the angel, because she knew that she could believe and trust God! 

When we learn to trust in what the Lord speaks to our hearts, when we learn to look to the Lord, when we learn what it is to have even a tiny bit of the Father’s heart overshadow us, I believe our relationship as servant turns into a relationship of friend!  And the dynamic of that trusting relationship causes our belief to reach a more intimate place that we may not have experienced before.

I hope one day to that this scripture will become a favorite of yours!

Vicky

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“You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will call His name Jesus.”  (Luke 1:31 HCSB)

An angel shows up one day to Mary and says “Greetings, you who are highly favored!  The Lord is with you.”  Can you imagine what had to be going through Mary’s head and heart!!!  An angel appearing before her and talking with her!  What would you have done!  I think that I would pass out!!!  And yet God chooses her… a 14 or 15-year-old… a teenager  … to carry the Savior of the World!

“You are to give him the name Jesus!” (vs. 31)  “This is the first proclamation of our Savior’s personal name since the beginning of time!  Jesus.  The name at which every knee will bow…every tongue will one day confess… a name that meant absolute salvation… a name with power like no other name.  Jesus!  What a beautiful name.” (2)

The Bible doesn’t tell us if Mary had any advanced warning that this encounter was going to show up in her life… or do you think maybe she knew something was up but not sure what that may look like?  God works like that sometimes.  As we walk closer and closer with him we may not see an angel but we know that God is doing something remarkable in our life and just don’t quite know what that is sometimes.  It’s like He reveals things at the right time, through divine opportunities and/or when we least expect it.  And over the years I have realized when God does show up in moments like this, unexpectantly, it will be for the benefit to bless others.  In this case she would be carrying something so very precious…

The Savior of the World!

Vicky

(1-2) Jesus, 90 Days with the One and Only / Beth Moore / B & H Publishing

Time for Giving!

Well wouldn’t you know that once I got back to writing again… my computer is done and out! Hope I can get it back up!

But the good news is I still can continue to log in from anywhere and write :)

I LOVE this time of year and hope you do tooooo! Ever since Thanksgiving was over my heart has been so filled with the notion that really it isn’t… it continues to live on.  But what is overwhelming my heart is that Thanksgiving ushered us in to the season of giving!  After Thanksgiving people are scurrying around preparing their homes with lights and trees and gifts to share with loved ones who we hold dear as well as sharing with others.

What I love most about it at another level is that once we do have an attitude of thanksgiving and gratitude we want to give!  How perfect could the symbolism be with these two holidays placed so perfectly close to each other!!!  How perfect that with an attitude of thanks and a heart for giving, we are prepared for the greatest gift of all…. the birth of our Savior and Lord, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who would come as the GREATEST GIFT OF ALL…. Jesus!!

I’m going to be purposeful for the next 30 days going into the new year with a genuine and  purposeful heart of giving!  I hope you’ll join me to bless others for the next 30 days!

Vicky

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