Advent Devotional: Faith-Family Tree {Mother}

A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a branch will bear fruit (Isaiah 11:1 NIV).

Moving from the Covenant of Law into a Covenant of Grace…

IMG_3119The bowl flew out of my hand and smashed into a million pieces on my kitchen floor.  My full hands missed the grip completely.

When I knelt to pick up the pieces, the story of my life flashed before my eyes. Whole at the beginning of time, then broken and separated from oneness, goodness, and truth, only to be joyfully reconciled through one tiny baby.

Through the ancestors in my faith family-tree, our Father picked the pieces of my broken life and carefully, yet tenderly put them back together in His perfect way.

When it looks as if our lives are falling to pieces, God is taking brokenness and making it beautiful once again.

It’s not a beauty which equates to what the world would consider beautiful. It is a beauty that radiates from within, as a result of God’s immense love and a heart-understanding of His restoration. It is a beauty that comes from knowing Him and understanding we are His masterpiece and a “snapshot” of His “big picture.” Our lives matter, even the tiniest details are important to Him, because He is working through each of us, in our parts of the world to fulfill His master plan.

God revealed Himself, after 400 years of silence, to the heart of one girl who became one young mother. For a moment it looked as if her world was falling apart until she understood that she was the special one chosen to bring reconciliation and to help God fulfill His promise to the world.

Today’s Scripture:

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6 NASB).

And coming in, he said to her, ‘Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.’ The angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. But she was very perplexed at this statement, and kept pondering what kind of situation this was. The angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end’ (Luke 1:28-33 NASB).

Today’s Snapshot: The Heart of a Mother

God used the willing condition of a young girl’s heart to bring the Savior to the world through the lineage of the Jesse tree.  She was confused and perplexed, yet the angel Gabriel told her she had found favor with God. For a moment her world fell to pieces.  She could choose to trust the angel when he said, “Do not be afraid,” or turn away from what he was asking her to do.

One faithful heart was chosen to fulfill one promise to the world.

She could have faced death, but she put herself aside, and let His will be done for the world through her. When God said, “Do not be afraid,” she trusted Him.

God chose Mary, not for her role in society, or for her years of wisdom, but rather for her willing, obedient, and faithful heart.

Then she held her son for the first time. She felt his sweet skin on her damp chest and at that moment, the brokenness of the world collided with the promise of the Prince of Peace.

Family Discussion:

~ In your life, where you are right now (student, mom, dad, friend), has God given you a responsibility? Remember, He often gives small responsibilities before he gives large ones.  We can choose to trust him and follow through, or we can choose to turn away.

~ What are you doing today that will make an impact for Him tomorrow? Did you give someone a hug, show someone appreciation, or share the Christmas story?

Closing Prayer:

Heavenly Father,
I praise You for Mary’s young, faithful, and obedient heart towards You and Your Word. Her life shows us how important it is to be responsible for the little things so that when You ask us to do something big, our hearts are ready. Even when it looked like her world was falling apart, and her heart did not understand the impact she would have on the world, she knew You, trusted You and followed You. Thank you for her faithful example.  Thank you for putting the pieces back together perfectly.  I am eternally grateful and I continue to be amazed by the wonder of your love.
In the Precious Name of Jesus, I pray,
Amen

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