Today we celebrate an event that took place over two thousand years ago, and we also celebrate a present reality: God is with us.
In a rapidly changing world where almost nothing is certain, Matthew 28 reminds us that there is something we can be sure of.
Jesus was walking with them, but they didn’t recognize him. This makes me ask the question: how often do we live our lives unaware that Jesus is right next to us?
Jesus doesn’t seek perfect people in whom to dwell, but those who are simply willing to open the door. He’ll take care of cleaning up our mess.
In most paintings and other depictions of Jesus he seems so calm and collected. So unmoved and above it all. But the only problem with the unfazed and unemotional depiction of Jesus is that, frankly, it isn’t biblical.
Jesus did, of course. Go to the bathroom, I mean. And that is the glory of the incarnation: he dwelt among us, as one of us.
Let’s establish a crucial fact: God made the first move. He didn’t wait for us to get our act together. He didn’t wait for us to be perfect.
Today, in this season of Advent, let God give you a holy expectation. Expectation that God will interrupt that person you’ve been praying for like Paul on the road to Damascus. Expectation that he will turn that seemingly impossible situation around.
Esther was a refugee, living during the period when the Israelites were held in captivity far from their own land. She was also a woman in a highly sexist society. Not exactly the person you would expect to change the course of history.
If you ever start believing the lie that your mistakes disqualify you from being used by God, remember the story of Judah and take heart: none of the heroes from God’s story were perfect.
It is easy for faith to become nationalistic. In other words, to believe that God is exclusively in favor of your nation as opposed to others. That God is only for “people like you.”
Moses had a speech impediment and didn’t believe in himself. And yet God called him to lead a nation of millions of people out of bondage and teach them his commands.
I don’t know what you’re going through or where you are right now, but when you hit rock bottom it’s easy to think that your story is over. That there’s no future. I wrote this to give you hope.
The Bible calls David a man after God’s own heart. He was also a man who had an affair with a woman and murdered her husband to cover it up. How can both be true?
If you’ve been following the Advent devotionals this week, you will have noticed a theme: apart from Jesus, not one of the people that God used in his story was perfect.