Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Once In Royal David's City"1 (Lyrics)
December is the last month of the year, but it is a busy month. We put up decorations, wreaths, lights (inside and out), Christmas trees, villages, and so on. Many do extra baking. We shop for perfect gifts for family and friends. Shopping online is becoming the norm so that time can be saved and more time can be spent at home. Generally, store hours are extended to accommodate consumers.
But there is much more to Christmas than all of that activity. I have a calendar in my office that has a quotation from Roy L. Smith: "He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree."
Luke 1:30b-31,35b – Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. The Holy Spirit will come upon 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. (NIV)
Matthew 1:20b-21 – Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. (NIV)
Isn't it wonderful to ponder the spectacular events that cause us to celebrate during this special time of the year? Do we not marvel that an angel would speak to the young peasant girl, Mary, to tell her that she will have a baby when she is a virgin? Do we not marvel that an angel would speak to the young carpenter Joseph, to assure him that his bride-to-be has been faithful to him alone?
The angel announced to these two young people that in the history of mankind, the exact moment had arrived that the Old Testament prophecies had predicted, and that they were the chosen couple. The eternal creator God was to become a man of human flesh and blood. At His Father's request, Jesus, God the Son, came to the tiny womb of the virgin Mary.
Our finite intellect cannot fathom or understand how God could become human and still be divine. Why would God the Son be willing to come to earth as a helpless baby? Christ came to die on Calvary so that we can be forgiven of our sin.
During this busy season of hustle and bustle with family and friends, may we not forget the reason for the season. May we be truly conscious of the incarnate God in flesh, conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin.
Prayer: Gracious heavenly Father, we are thankful for this time of year in which we can celebrate the birth of Your Son. We thank You for sending Jesus to be our Saviour. Help us by how we live and talk to encourage others to trust Jesus Christ for salvation. Amen.