Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2015 - Day 339
Devotional Song: … GO TO THIS LINK … Please take the time to take in a video of Mark Lowry and the Bill Gaither group, repeating my favorite Christmas song, … Mary Did You Know, which I cited in my blog yesterday, … where Mary is informed of what is to come with the birth of her baby boy, … much as she was when the Angel Gabriel came to her.
Highlight Passage: Luke 1: 28 [NKJV] …
28 And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”
… The angels declare to the shepherds near Bethlehem, the coming of Messiah.
Highlight Context – Luke 1: 26-38 [NKJV] … USE THIS LINK …
… Gabriel’s Christmas surprise for Mary!
Reference Passage #1 - Matthew 1:18-25 [NKJV] … USE THIS LINK …
… When confronted with the birth of God’s Son to his betrothed, Joseph followed the call of God obediently.
Reference Passage #2 - John 14: 21 [NKJV] …
21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”
… He gave us the ultimate Christmas gift on the cross. The gift we give back to Him is to surrender and share His love with others.
Reference Passage #3 - 1st John 2: 5 [NKJV] …
5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.
… When we keep His will/ways obediently, we know that He is in us.
My Journal for Today: Today’s Our Daily Bread author, Albert Lee, reminded his readers (me) of the ultimate conundrum of Jesus’ birth to Mary and Joseph; and how their obedience to God’s calling became their Christmas gift back to God. Lee wrote: When the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and then to shepherds with good news for the world, was it good news to this teenage girl? Perhaps Mary was thinking: How do I explain my pregnancy to my family? Will my fiancé Joseph call off the betrothal? What will the townspeople say? Even if my life is spared, how will I survive as a mother all alone? … When Joseph learned about Mary’s pregnancy, he was troubled. He had three options. Go ahead with the marriage, divorce her publicly and allow her to be publicly scorned, or break off the engagement quietly.
But in both instances, … Mary, having a visit from the Angel Gabriel and Joseph, being called out by God’s Spirit in a dream, … these two were in a social dilemma of the highest order. However, they took what God gave them and obediently did exactly what God called of them. And that is the model we must have in this special time of year where we celebrate the gift of our Savior in a manger, … especially when there are so many cultural and commercial temptations to avoid our witness as well as demands of political correctness to shy away from sharing the love of Christ. Just like Mary and Joseph, there are a lot of human reasons to balk from sharing Christ at Christmas.
But Jesus, Who now resides in our hearts, calls each of us out to be obedient and show His love in us by sharing it with others (see John 14:21 and 1st John 2:5), especially during the Advent Season. If we’re truly Christians that’s the least we can/should do during this special time of year … where we remember what God did to/through the obedience of Mary and Joseph @ the first Christmas.
My Prayer Today: Oh, dear Lord, … HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Jesus!! And let me give You the gift of my obedience this time of year … AND ALWAYS!! … Amen
Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries. If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.