Pastor Michael talked about the Christmas story through Paul’s eyes. Paul wrote about it 55 years after Jesus’ birth, so he was able to listen to the Holy Spirit and take notes from others who witnessed it to give us a unique significance and how it relates to us. In four simple verses, Galatians 4:4-7, we find out that God has a set time for everything, His son was born to redeem us, by this redemption we are adopted into God’s family and now have Him as a Father, and with this adoption we are no longer slaves but heirs to God. Christmas is about God sending His Son so that we may become His children. When you feel unworthy, remember, You are worth Christmas to God, He chose you to adopt.
Remember, as a child, waiting for Christmas, counting down the agonizingly long days? When Christmas finally came, you were so excited to find presents under the tree for you. Imagine, for hundreds of generations, waiting for Christmas to come, not knowing when it would happen. Before Jesus came, many lived their whole lives in obedience to God with the hope that each day would be the day the Messiah arrived, and most would never see that day. Could you devote your life to a promise that may not happen for 700 years? In Luke chapter 1 we find out that Zechariah and Elizabeth did, and because of their faith and hope, God blessed them.
In the conclusion of our “God Is…” series, we are reminded that God is here with us always, even if things don’t work out the way we planned. Jeff told us the story of a man stuck in a flood. He prayed for God to save him but ignored the canoe, police boat, and helicopter that God sent to him. Sometimes we picture God’s help differently than what He is sending us, leaving us blind to His work. When we recognize that God is with us, faith, hope and love happen. Don’t miss your canoe because you are waiting for a yacht.
Sermon given by: Jeff Dumm
To truly find God’s blessing in our homes, we must be willing to make His peace there. When we hold onto emotions of betrayal and hurt, we end up wearing it like armor and that is a heavy burden to carry. But when we forgive and become peacemakers, God blesses us and takes that weight for us. By making our homes Christ-centered, we must offer what he has offered us, unconditional forgiveness and grace. There are three ways you can become a peacemaker: tell the truth in love, apologize when you are wrong, and forgive and let go. We are created in God’s image and we never look more like Him then when we forgive, when we work for peace.
We all want to feel blessed, but how do you make that happen? We need to have a Christ-centered home, not just a Christian home. God tells us in Matthew 5:6 that when we hunger for righteousness we will be filled… blessed. There are three ways you can create hunger for righteousness… involve God daily in your life, make church non-negotiable, and show that serving is fun.