No Problem! (The Nativity Story, Part 2)

Read Luke 1.26-38

Mary’s response is arguably the most amazing response of any human being in the Scriptures. God asked her to throw away her reputation (through an "illegitimate" pregnancy). Add to this that Mary is very young, and she simply says, "I am the Lord’s servant. Let it happen as you have said." What an incredible response!

When God calls, just say yes!

When God calls you, how receptive are you to saying yes? Throughout this Advent season, I have been praying, "God, give me a healthy heart so that I will always say yes to you!"

Say yes!
Is there something God has been calling you to do and you’ve been stalling, responding more like Zechariah than Mary? Today/this week, say yes to God!

Be ready!
Maybe you haven’t sensed God’s call yet. I encourage to make yourself available to God so that when God calls, you’ll say yes!

God is creating a culture of yes men/women! We usually use those terms in a negative way, but God is looking for people who say yes to him. I can only imagine the things God will do through us when we make ourselves fully available to God!

O God, thank you for Mary’s example of someone who said yes even though the costs were extremely high! Help us to say yes whenever you call us to do something, whether big or small. Give us healthy hearts so that we will always say yes to you! Amen.

No Way! (The Nativity Story, Part 1)

Heart disease is the number one killer in America. And spiritual heart disease is the number one killer in the church. Today we begin our Advent/Christmas series that will help us to develop healthy hearts. We’ll try to do so by looking at how the main characters of the story each responded to God. We’ll learn that healthy hearts say yes to God!

The older I get, sometimes it gets harder it is to say yes to God’s big tasks than when I was a young, passionate, more naive person. What about you? Isn’t that true for all of us?

Today, we’re going to look at Zechariah’s encounter with the angel and his response. Read Luke 1.5-25.

To prevent heart disease, change your lifestyle!

Physically, to prevent heart disease, heart experts tell us to …

  • Manage our weight
  • Quit smoking
  • Eat well
  • Exercise

It’s not much different for preventing spiritual heart disease …

  • Watch the thing that distract us and weigh us down
  • Get rid of damaging/sinful habits
  • Get proper spiritual nourishment
  • Exercise, or practice our faith

I encourage you to pray throughout Advent: "God, give me a healthy heart so that I will always say yes to you!"

One of the ways of describing what we (as the church) do is the work of heart-shaping. I dream of a place full of people with healthy hearts, people whose hearts are being shaped and transformed by God’s love, people who eagerly say yes to God!