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Friday, December 25, 2015

Advent Unfolding - Day 27


  Week 4 – Relation

      Day 27 – Messiah

“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

What about you? Who do you say He is?

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Thursday, December 24, 2015

Advent Unfoldoing - Day 26



  Week 4 – Relation

      Day 26 – Love

 It was because of love that the Everlasting Father came to Earth to dwell with his creation. 

                                        To live as one with his handiwork. 

He did not come as the anticipated,  the expected King – but as a newborn baby.

Through the very ones he made – he chose to redeem his family line,

Through  a family lineage marked with cheaters and robbers and harlots and murders.

                     He chose to come -  to dwell  - to live with us,

  all because of love.

The Everlasting Father provided a way for restoration – for wholeness – for reconciliation…

With strife all around us  in this broken, hurting, missed up, confused world – 

                          a world  - speaking accusations

                 - seeking justices  –settling  for the last word.

                       a world   - yearning for a word of hope - 

hope comes…  all because of love -

love is always the politically correct reply – love is always the best word – love is always  best…

We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!  But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.

Because the word became flesh – on Christmas morning…

                                         ultimate, extravagant love was born -  and love is  always the last word.

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The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Advent Unfolding - Day 25

Week 4 – Relation
 Day 25 – Kingdom

Long  before Jesus was born, when the nation of Israel was gathered on Mt. Sinai, the people accepted this Covenant from God their King.

"Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation." (Exodus 19:6)

His palace was a  tabernacle in the wilderness, and his presence was with them in the cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. When he moved, they moved and when he stopped, they stopped. They followed their  King, as he instructed them through Moses.

But the people grew discontent. 

"We want a king over us," they cried. "Then we will be like all other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles" (1 Samuel 8:19-20).  
God’s people had rejected Him as their king, but be gave them what they desired and appointed a king over them. Saul was the first king but he proved unfit, so he anointed David from the tribe of Judah, born in Bethlehem - all part of his plan to establish  a kingdom - not a human kingdom but the Kingdom of God.

"Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever," and one of your sons will always sit upon it (2 Samuel 7:16).

Jesus was that Son of David who had come to re-establish the reign of God once more and restore this kingdom - a kingdom not of human glory like David's or Solomon's, but one with spiritual glory like the Kingdom in the wilderness, where the King himself dwelt in the midst of his people.The Kingdom of God

So when Jesus came preaching, "Repent for the kingdom of heaven is near" he was speaking of himself. The kingdom was near – the kingdom was here because he was in their midst.

"The kingdom of God is in the midst of you." (Luke 17:21)

This kingdom is available for every heart that acknowledges his kingship -  for every life that desires to follow him.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Advent Unfolding - Day 24


Week 4 – Relation
 Day 24 – Family

These past 4 months we have had our whole family together – under one roof. Having Brittaney home from Brazil has been wonderful. We had the opportunity to go on a little family vacation for 3 days. We had so much fun hanging out together - Site seeing, thrift shopping, playing games, exploring, SONY DSCSasquatch hunting, turkey chasing, eating meals together,  finding ways to entertain each withut internet or T.V.  and taking pictures together.  We laughed so much those 3 days and just enjoyed each other.  One of my favorite pictures we took from our trip was this one – because it reminds me how unique, expressive fun and crazy this family of mine is.

Family is so important – it is one of God’s masterpieces. He choose to bring His redemption through family – through the generations He planned the perfect time, the perfect place and the perfect family to bring His son.  It was not a random act, or last ditch attempt. I have often told my children that God put them in this family at just the right moment, in just the right birth order for a very specific purpose - that where they fall in this family is a training ground and preparation for life – not only for them but for each member of this family.  

I was thinking about Jesus and his family. How God chose Jesus to be born to Joseph and Mary, to  come from their family line .   A family line laced with murdereSONY DSCrs, prostitutes,adulterers, liars,cheaters, thieves and hypocrites. But also a family line graced with faithfulness, courage, determination, perseverance, devotion, and sacrificial love. A family line not unlike any of ours. He chose to draw them into His redemption story – He chooses to draw us, our families, into this story - to become a part of His Family. 

How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He’s the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son. Ephesians 1:4-6
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