Wonder of Wonders November 29, 2022
Tuesday, November 29th
Advent Devotional #3 written by Pastor Shawn Thornton
Wonder of Wonders
To read today: Matthew 1:18-25
This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit.
Our modern era has identified seven ancient wonders of the world. Some have identified seven global wonders of Christmas. If you could travel anywhere in the world for Christmas, here are a few places you might want to visit (maybe you have been to one or more of these):
Vienna, Austria: Explore three different Christmas markets, all dating back hundreds of years. You can find nativity scenes and other handcrafted holiday decorations.
New York, NY: Ice skate at Rockefeller Center and see the giant 95-foot Christmas tree covered in lights.
Nuremberg, Germany: Wander through the 200 stalls of handcrafted ornaments, traditional toys, and sweet gingerbread hearts. With over 70 Christmas markets, there is something for everyone.
Montreal, Canada: Visit Montreal’s very European celebration without having to cross the Atlantic. Weekly firework displays, steaming cups of hot chocolate, and candied chestnuts make this a favorite travel destination.
Whether you travel across the globe to see one of these Christmas celebrations or drive through a neighborhood near you famous for elaborately decorated homes, such a journey adds to the seasonal wonder you experience.
Mary’s journey to the stable in Bethlehem starts with a surprise visit from the angel Gabriel. Gabriel tells her that she will have a baby. This was a surprise to Mary because she was a virgin. How could she be expecting a child? Sometimes the best things in life are not the things we do or the places we go but the space God makes in our lives for him. Mary had to put her plans aside for this new venture God was taking her on, and sometimes we must do the same thing. God took what could legitimately concern Mary and made it the basis of deeper worship of him by her.
What God was planning to do through Mary was something that had never been done before. It was prophesied by Old Testament Prophets like Isaiah, but there was no example or pattern to follow. It was something new and wonderful. So, what is God doing in your life that has taken you by surprise? What is your worry that God might want to change into wonder? What worry will He transform into the basis of your worship?
Today’s Prayer: God, please take my worries and turn them into worship. I want to change how I view my challenges. Just as you were doing a new work in Mary, may you do a new work in my life today.