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Archive for December, 2011

Being Joseph

December 22, 2011 Leave a comment

What’s the good word? Every holiday season I get into costume and I portray Joseph. No, not the coat of many colors Joseph, but the famous step-dad of Jesus Joseph. I love being able to play this character who shows up only so briefly in Scripture, and yet, in my opinion, plays a HUGE role in the story. Not only that, but I feel that he also sets a great example for us all during this holiday season, and all year long.

Here we have Joseph, who in the middle of ambiguity and confusion, still takes Mary as his wife and doesn’t abandon Mary and Jesus. In the middle of all of this confusing news of a baby being born through the Holy Spirit, who will one day be the Savior of the world, Joseph shows honor and compassion towards Mary and this unborn child. It’s a lesson for all of us this holiday season. As the Christ child comes to us and visits this earth this weekend, it is through him that God gives us a shot of being Joseph to someone this season and every day. Although the situation may seem confusing and you don’t have all the facts, God DOES call us all to be Joseph to whoever it might be. Merry Christmas! And that’s the good word for today!

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Advent

December 14, 2011 Leave a comment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s the good word? Well, you wouldn’t know it, but we are deep into the season of Advent. For all it’s intents and purposes, I believe it gets harder to stay in the mindset of Advent as we get closer to Christmas. I know for me personally, I do GREAT at the beginning. I’ve just come off of a thanksgiving feast and that first Sunday of Advent comes that Sunday after. It’s a sign to me to get ready! But as we get closer to Christmas, the stress of the season seems to come into play and well, there are times when it just doesn’t feel like Christmas. But I believe that the purpose of Advent is to help us in this season.

The well-known Internet Monk blogger Michael Spencer illustrates the difference between Advent and Christmas well. He says, “Christmas is joyous, but the joy comes after weeks of waiting, watching, lamenting and calling upon God. Advent is that season of waiting; of looking for the signs and promises of the Savior in the Scriptures and in the world.” Advent slows us down. Advent is counter to the chaos to the noise and bustle. In the weeks leading up to Christmas—when our culture is shouting at us to “spend!” “buy!” and “consume!”—the season of Advent teaches us to slow down and reflect on the God’s story and our place in it, it teaches us patience and cultivates within us a child-like sense of anticipation and longing. Oh, how I long to rediscover the natural spiritual rhythm that comes with the season of Advent. When we do discover it, I believe it will help Christians experience the true meaning of Christmas.And that’s the good word for today.

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Hope

December 3, 2011 Leave a comment

What’s the good word? Jeremiah writes in the book of Lamentations: Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. It’s no surprise that if you watch the evening or late night news you tend to ask yourself often, “Is there any hope?” Today, dreams are underscored by a positive, successful outlook for the future. Hence the American dream, rags to riches, Cinderella, a dropout rising to greatness. But how does one define happiness though? It is increasingly obvious it’s not defined by money. Even those who possess “happiness” now are faced with turmoil. Pain results, a feeling of inadequacy, incompetence, degenerative self-worth. “I walk alone.” In this season of Advent we are reminded that Hope comes to us in Jesus Christ.

The wonder in the Scriptures is the hope pulsing through it, this statement in Lamentations on God a fitting example: “His mercy never fails. It is new every morning.” Tomorrow is a new day, a fresh start, ripe with possibility. Smog and particulates conceal celestial glory, but the right evening provides unparalleled clarity. Take a breath. Make a wish. Dream. Hope without ceasing, and then, this holiday season, bring hope to someone. And that’s the good word for today.

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