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BLESSING AND BELIEF - December 25, 2022

Sunday, December 25th

Advent Devotional #29 written by Pastor Shawn Thornton

 

BLESSING AND BELIEF

 

 

To read today: Luke 1:39-45

 

“Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”

Luke 1:45

 

 

Merry Christmas! May God bless you and yours with a wonderful day in him and together with those you love.

Many words can describe how we should respond to Jesus, the Child of Promise, this Christmas day.

Glorify

Celebrate

Thank

Love

Surrender

Trust

Follow

Of all the words that could tell us how to respond to Jesus, Mary’s cousin Elizabeth picked the most critical word. What she shares with us is recorded in one of the most incredible and little-known verses of the Christmas story – Luke 1:45. The word Elizabeth conveyed to Mary that makes all the difference in her story, makes all the difference in your story – and mine. That word is the only way to respond to a promise from God. It is the only way to respond to Jesus, the Child of the Promise Himself. Elizabeth’s one word we should embrace this Christmas day is believe.

Look at what Elizabeth tells pregnant Mary as she arrives at Elizabeth’s little Judean home in the hills, “Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” (Luke 1:45)

Blessing and Belief

“Blessing and belief” go hand in hand. Like “holly and jolly,” “milk and cookies,” or “egg and nog.” God blesses those who choose to believe. He faithfully keeps His promises to those who trust him. When we trust Him we begin to discover the satisfaction of His blessing daily in our lives. God ensured that the beginning of Jesus’ story would be bathed in blessed belief. So many characters within the nativity story express belief in the newborn baby. The end of Jesus’ story is all about belief as well. The path of peace leads to faith in Jesus. We travel from the cradle to the cross at Christmas. Just as Mary believed in Jesus as the Messiah that God was sending through her to us, we believe Jesus came, lived, died, was buried, and conquered the grave for us.

The disciple Thomas’ last interaction with Jesus went from doubt and disbelief to a simple, but profound faith in Christ. Thomas needed to see for himself that Jesus had been resurrected. He needed to see the nail prints and the wound in Jesus’ side. Jesus comes through for Thomas, allowing Thomas to see the marks that remained from the horror of the cross.

The response from Thomas was, “My Lord and my God.” Then the most incredible words of the Gospels come to light–words that Jesus spoke concerning you and me. Jesus said, “Because you, Thomas, have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29).

The Christmas story begins with “blessed belief.” The Cross story ends with “blessed belief.”

This Christmas, the greatest blessing God wants to give you is in response to your belief. Salvation comes when we believe in Jesus. The greatest gift you could receive today is to accept Him as your Savior. The greatest gift you could give Jesus is your life. As you walk with Him, He then provides blessing after blessing.

Jesus made all the difference in the world for all time and eternity. We sing and celebrate that difference today. Jesus makes all the difference in your life when you follow Him. That is the impact of Jesus, the Child of Promise. 

Merry Christmas!

Pray Today: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your Son the Child of Promise. Thank you for giving me the gift of Your Son as my Savior. Thank you for loving me, saving me, and giving me the greatest gift of any Christmas, Jesus. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

 

 

 

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