Blessed are the Believers
"Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when He looked on me, to take away my reproach among people." --Luke 1:25
"'Nothing will be impossible with God.' And Mary said, 'Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.' And the angel departed from her."--Luke 1:37-38
"And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, 'Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.'
And Mary said, 'My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has looked on the humble estate of His servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed, for He who is mighty has done great things for me, and Holy is His Name.'" --Luke 1:41-49
We serve a God who removes reproach. Who takes away shame. Who turns fear and trouble into joy and gladness and inserts birth into the midst of emptiness. Our God delights to draw out what we perceive as lack and use it for His great purposes. His dreams and plans are impossible to men, but He uses what we've given up on to show that He is the One who does awesome wonders!
God's plans are future-forward. Filled with vision. Lifting our eyes higher and farther.
Calling the unlikely into the unexpected for His Glory.
A teenage girl from the slums of Nazareth was overshadowed by the Holiness and Favor of God.
The God-fearing carpenter who wanted to marry her received more than he bargained for, including the strength to step into a role he didn't anticipate.
A faithful man and woman of the priesthood who were aged and childless saw God's wonders through their own child who was prophesying even from the womb.
These were the first characters in the story of the Savior's birth--all blessed because they believed the Word of the Lord.
They obeyed the voice of God's messengers, stood firm in the face of misunderstanding, and pursued the Lord, looking actively for what He would do next.
They did not receive every detail of God's lofty plans. The blueprint of the future was not completely laid out for them. What they were being invited into was bigger than humanity could have imagined. A God-sized dream that only He could fathom.
But they accepted His invitation into it. They believed and followed. They worshipped God for what they couldn't fully understand yet.
And so can we.
With the Spirit we have received from the Savior of the world, we can abide in our gracious Father as sons and daughters of God, letting His words abide in us, growing into the confidence that allows us to ask anything according to His will and know it will be done (John 15:7)!
Be encouraged this Christmas...He will teach you what you need to know.
"It is the Glory of God to conceal a matter and the honor of kings is to search it out" (Proverbs 25:2). You will understand what you don't yet comprehend.
In the meantime, faith looks expectantly for His Work, following the path of His Fingerprints. Faith requires steadfastness. Feet firmly planted in God's faithful character. Don't be stalled by your lack. Cry out to to the Abundant One. He will provide the courage you need. He will order your steps.
Faith is praise unleashed in the middle of the story.
Faith magnifies God, for His powerful Presence eclipses those things that held you back. In the brightness of His Smile, those things that disqualified you have no relevance anymore.
There is only His Ability to equip us, His Strength to carry us, His Word to light our way.
His Mercy transforms worlds one breath at a time. His Mercy grows in the wilderness, teaching us to find our source in Him, for He is Enough.
His Mercy is Light overtaking darkness, springing up right in the midst of it, giving you and I a place in His story.
Embrace the Mystery. Revel in it. Rest in it. Even the parts you can't understand.
Our God has perfect plans. And He is to be praised!
It's time to sing. And watch those praises reveal the beauty of the journey.
Set in Silver Christmas