October 17, 2015 by pastorjdo3
The Copper Grove Group spent the night in the Christmas story. Though ahead of season, the discussion for the night was drawn from Luke 1:34-38 and Luke 2:13-19, with the focus on verse 19.
Verse 19 reads, “but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often.”
Mary, chosen and favored by the Lord had many questions about this assignment. The angels answered her as best they could, reveling to her that they had been given to show her, and encouraging her. Mary was asked to take in a lot in a small time frame, and was given not just the honor, but the task and responsibility of giving birth to the savior of the world! She accepted the assignment, not knowing all the facts and details, but pressed forward because she knew the one giving the assignment. The full display of angels no doubt helped Mary believe this was not ordinary message, and was truly a divine assignment.
Mary began down the path, again, not knowing all the details. She was given an overview, one that contained the introduction with lots of foreshadowing but did not include the body of the story as well as the conclusion. Much like Mary, God works with us. He gives us pieces of the story, and then sets us on our journey. The outline reveals itself as the timeline advances. We truly walk by faith, and not by sight. Our steps are truly ordered by the Lord. We advance step by step, often not knowing where God is leading, leaving us to stumble upon out set place and divine assignment.
Also like Mary, God deals with us often in private. God gave her a unique assignment, announced her as favored, but only she knew what she was assigned. Along the way, she was persecuted and misunderstood, as people saw her carrying, but lacked the understanding of the circumstances on how things came to be.
Mary then gives birth to the Lord, after spending time with Elizabeth. God had her witness another miracle, giving her further sign that what had been spoken to her was true. Then after giving birth, God send Shepherds to visit her, further confirming her assignment, but still not giving all the details. Mary then is left to “ponder these things in her heart.”
When living out ones purpose, we will face many trials and tribulations. We also are faced with our own short comings and doubt. We must stand courageously amidst doubters and critiques. Mary would be labeled by some, rejected by many, yet she had to press on. The text leaped out to the group because it highlights the personal journey we all have entered, and it shows how we will make it through. The truth is, Mary had 1. The Word of God Via the Angels, 2. The Miracle of Elizabeth and 3. The Testimony of the Shepherds.
- Word of God…
When you walk with the Lord, you will have to lean upon His Word! We must remind ourselves constantly of what He has declared about us. Holding fast to what He has called us to be, and claims us to be. I’m sure Mary had her moments, like we all do! There are moments when we ask God to recount the score card. Check for flaws on the scantron card and machine, but yet and still, He has made His choice, and as foolish as it sounds, its you! One of the most important things about His Word is not that calling or assignment that has been given to you, but the knowledge of the one giving the Word. We get to lean up His character and His consistent nature which never changes, and will complete the work that was begun in us. His Word helps give us parameters for our journey, insuring that we can apply His choices to our daily living to bring about all He has placed on our hearts to do.
2. The Miracle of Elizabeth
When you walk with the Lord, sometimes the miracles you see Him perform and the prayers you see Him answer with other people must be enough. There will be times when things seem grim. The light at the end of the tunnel seems dim at best, and there seems to be no end in sight, or no paved path ahead to walk upon. In these times, we can look to others, and must rely upon the testimony they have about their own personal walk and journey to get us through. God used Elizabeth to show his power, and to show His complete control over life and death. He reserved her womb, allowed her to be an outcast as one baron, and allowed her to grow old without the joys of motherhood, all to bring her joy and restore her name and reputation with one child. We must keep looking for the testimonies of Elizabeth as we walk towards our destiny, knowing that He is faithful and just, using who and whom He chooses because He is God.
3. Testimony of the Shepherds
When you walk with the Lord, there will be times when you can lean on His Word, hear His Voice, see the miracles in your neighbors home, hear their testimony about how they got over. In these moments, God is faithful. Often he sends word by others to confirm what He has already shown you or to direct you in the path that you should go. Mary received the Word from them, reminding her of the initial Words given, that she might continue to believe. We too need these same encounters to complete the journey.
So, what are you “Pondering in her heart?” What Word(s) are you holding on to? What is God doing to you and through you?