December 23, 2011

Dec. 23: God’s ever-present glory and love

Mara_Weaver

By Mara Weaver, a junior history major from Bloomington, Ill.
SCRIPTURE: Galations 4:4-7 (NRSV)
Scroll down for complete Scripture.

DEVOTIONAL:
As I sat down to reflect on today’s Scripture passage, I found myself steeped in the stress of the ending semester, a time when no one seems to be able find time to get all of his or her work done, let alone stop to breathe. In the hustle and bustle of school, I compartmentalize my life, convincing myself that if I only get through each of the parts, I will survive the whole of my busy existence. But in reality this separation will not help me come out the other side in one piece, and the comfort of to-do lists can only go so far.

In the same way, God’s unexpected coming has become a part of our routine, a part of the season for many of us, but we become almost numb to the fact that Christ not only has come, but also will come again.

In sending Jesus, God not only gave us the opportunity to inherit the Kingdom of God as God’s own beloved children; more than that, God gave us a new way to enter into relationship with God. God has come, yet God continues to enter into our lives each day, and the opportunity for relationship is not a missed one. In the season of Advent, I encourage us to take a step back and revel in this gift that God—our Mother and our Father—has bestowed upon us.

God’s glory and God’s love cannot be put in a box—no matter how distracted we are—displayed occasionally and stored along with the rest of our Christmas decorations. That glory and love overcame the world on the night that Jesus was born, they are with us now, and they will be forevermore. Praise the Lord!

SCRIPTURE: Galations 4:4-7 (NRSV)
4 But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. 6 Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “”Abba”, Father.” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.

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Comments (13)

  1. Thanks, Mara. Good stuff.

    Randy Springer December 23, 2011 |
  2. Thank you, Mara, for your encouraging reminder. Yes, He comes, ever comes, however preoccupied we may be.
    Christmas Blessings!
    Mervyn Carapiet

    Mervyn Carapiet December 23, 2011 |
  3. Mara, I liked your comment that we should not put the wonder of Christmas away with our decorations, but keep it in our consciousness all the time. Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to do this.

    Dorothy Cutrell December 23, 2011 |
  4. Stress never really leaves us this side of glory. But thanks be to God who comes in the middle of that stress and says you are mine-let me carry your load- I have given all for you. Thank you Mara for the timely reminder during this busy season where we tend to forget the best gift we will ever receive may we always keep that gift open!

    Betty December 23, 2011 |
  5. Thank you Mara for writing this in the midst of a stressful time in college. God comes to us in those times in wonderous ways! What wonderous love is this!

    Lorene December 23, 2011 |
  6. Wonderfully, expressed. A great way to begin my day and to hold on to the wonder of Christmas into the New Year.

    Jim Brenneman, GC President December 23, 2011 |
  7. Thank you, Mara, for waking us up to recognize that God is with us in each day, not just the “holy” days.

    Leanne Schertz December 23, 2011 |
  8. thank you for reminding me of God’s love and presence…
    not just at Christmas but always…
    blessings and peace to you
    sandi

    Sandi December 23, 2011 |
  9. Thank you for this message. It echos what God has been saying to me, too.

    Diana Thomas December 23, 2011 |
  10. Thank you for this most important message. Having spent many years in formal education, I have found the most important lessons come in words like yours. Love God, neighbor and self, first of all. Exams, papers and grades will fade as meaningful events in your past, but love abides.

    Gary Olsen-Hasek December 23, 2011 |
  11. Thank you for this devotional. It is beautifully written and expounded upon the from the truth of God’s word. What an encouraging message!

    Leanna Teodosio December 23, 2011 |
  12. “God – our Mother and our Father”. One could justify this language as metaphor, but it is too likely to be misunderstood – unless feminism has taken over.

    Victor Perry December 24, 2011 |
  13. Wow, where do I start? I usually like to take notes on what stands out to me in the devotionals I read, but if I were to attempt to do so on this one, I’d be writing for a long time. For instance, as a fellow student, I can relate to the compartmentalizing and the reliance on “to-do” lists that you express here, and how that often distracts us from what is really important. Also, although I can’t hear you reading this, I can hear the passion in the last paragraph. Thank you for writing this, and Merry Christmas!

    Elizabeth S.O. December 24, 2011 |