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December 17

Pregnant with the Promises of God

Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile an account of the things accomplished among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word, it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus; so that you may know the exact truth about the things you have been taught.

Luke 1:1-4 NASB

For many years, my preparation for celebrating Christmas focused on the story of Jesus’s birth. Looking into the Nativity story beyond the superficial facts into the deeper teachings of God’s Word woven into this story.

Becoming a Believer at 33 years old with three small children, five-years-old and younger, provided the perfect incentive to seek the truths found in Jesus’s story and share what I discovered with them. It was all new to me too.

The heart of my preparation for Christmas was to know more about Jesus, the One who captured my heart, and share Him with others. The continuing practice of preparing each year through reading the stories surrounding His birth led me deeper and deeper into a passion for Him, and like Luke, for others to know Him. Not just know about Him but know Him!

After many years, those moments with my children, the study and spending time with Him in His Word, became a series of twenty-five devotionals I published into a book: The Heart of Bethlehem. This was an unexpected result of pursuing Him in His Word, because I didn’t set out to write a book. I simply set out to know who He was and share Him with my children.

Mary and Elizabeth are the two mothers central to the Nativity story. They both experienced supernatural births. Elizabeth, old, barren, way past menopause, carried her firstborn son who was designated by God to prepare the way for Jesus in the world (Isaiah 40:3). Mary, a virgin, conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and carried the Son of God (Isaiah 7:14). Both believing women, both familiar with the truths planted in their hearts from the Word, both pregnant with the promises of God.

Pregnant-Promises-Fruitful-God's Glory-FUMC.jpg[Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash]

The Truth was planted in my heart, and after a very long gestation period, a devotional book was born to help others see the Extraordinary God we have: One who takes the ordinary and makes it extraordinary. All who receive the wonder of His Truth, Way, and Life enter into an extraordinary journey too.

Once we come to know Jesus, every Believer is implanted with the Truth and becomes pregnant with the promises of God. Each of us as followers of Christ carry around a promise of peace, hope, restoration, love, and grace. With time and obedience, something will be birthed through us to help others know God and His glory.

What promise has He planted in you? How are you preparing for Him to use you to fulfill His promise to a dark hurting world?

Begin asking God to prepare you to be used for the building up of His Kingdom and as a means of fulfilling His promise to all creation.

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.

Romans 8:18 ESV

Lord, reveal the promise of the Holy Spirit You’ve implanted in me. Grow the gifts, the graces, and the power You’ve given me, to glorify You in the world. Amen.

 Additional Scriptures: Philippians 1:9-11, Colossians 1:3-6, Luke 8:9-15, John 15:5

Carol Weaver

Another Side of Sunday: Hebrews 6:13-20

Begin by reading Hebrews 6:13-20, the first Sunday of the year’s Scripture. For another version, read The Message.

We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek. –vs. 19-20

We go to great lengths to keep our promises. Remember as a child making a pinky-promise or adding “cross my heart and hope to die…” to solidify your words? I don’t know about you, but it is hard work for me to keep my promises.

Hard to follow through when I’ve doled out a consequence while parenting my three. At times, hard to remember what promise I’ve made. There were times I broke promises, even when I made it to God.

As I sat and reflected quietly in my pew I heard the words spoken, “God always keeps His covenant.” I jot down four words in the margin of my Bible.

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Think about that.

Not, God won’t break a promise.

Not, God tries really hard to keep His promises.

Not, God chooses never to break a promise

God can’t. It is not in His nature, doesn’t even occur to Him.

I breathe awe deep as I think about it. It’s like warming myself by the fire on a crisp night. God can’t break promises… ever. This new insight leaves me basking in the goodness of God. A goodness beyond my imagination.

And this, sisters and brothers, is the Hope that anchors our soul firm and secure. It ushers us into the inner sanctuary, behind the curtain of separation and brings us face to face with our High Priest… Jesus.

You’re a good, good Father. It’s who You are, who You are… And I am loved by You. It’s who I am, who I am… You are perfect in all of Your ways to us. I am amazed by You Jesus. Amen 

(Today’s prayer comes from the lyrics of Chris Tomlin’s song Good Good Father.)

[Feature Image Photo on blog by Kaley Dykstra on Unsplash]