Todays Reading Mark 6; Psalms 130
The second week of Advent is upon us. I am so excited for this time of renewed joy and warmth. My family and I have gotten the tree up, the Advent Calendar is replenished every day, and the presents are being wrapped. The Spirit of Christmas is real and you can sense it in many places. On the radio we hear many songs and see many movies and classics that remind us of the season. The lyrics of one song spells it out so well:
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Toys in every store
But the prettiest sight to see, is the holly that will be
On your own front door
A pair of hop-along boots and a pistol that shoots
Is the wish of Barney and Ben
Dolls that will talk and will go for a walk
Is the hope of Janice and Jen
And Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again
We begin to let our hearts and minds drift from the true meaning and essence of Christmas and the start to redirect our focus to ourselves. In Mark 6, we can see that while in the midst of Christ many of his close people were not able to fully understand the Essence of Christ that that they had in their midst and the ability to comprehend what he brought.
Mark 6: 1-6
Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples.2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.
“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph,[a] Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.
4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home.” 5 He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6 He was amazed at their lack of faith.
How many times have we believers in Christ, not acknowledged the full manifestations of his presence? How many times we seen the miracles that happen in our daily life and not see Christ in them. How many times have we experienced the unimaginable and then question the validity of the Spirit?
We have to be mindful in this time of preparation for the coming Christ because he might have a particular purpose for us and we may not be aware of his presence. Lets look at an example of this in Chapter 6.
45 Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. 46 After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray.
47 Later that night, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on land. 48 He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them. Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake. He was about to pass by them, 49 but when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost. They cried out, 50 because they all saw him and were terrified.
Immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”51 Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed, 52 for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened.
I pray that as we continue through these two weeks of Advent that we will be able to have our hearts be light and warmth by the presence of Christ. Let us not be afraid, if during this time we come into “rocky waters”, let our hope be in him. He who has us ever in his sight and ready to step into the boat at any given time.
As a final thought, a couple of days ago, my son and I were talking about life and then he makes a profound statement for a six-year old. “Dad, did you know that Christmas is Christ-mas. We have to remember that it’s all about Christ.” Wow, my heart is overjoyed that he is allowing God to speak through him. Let us adults also remember that it is not about the presents, cards, parties, cookies, or anything else. Its about Christ. Be Blessed.