– Secret Place Insights –
Dear One, during worship these last few Sundays I have been either looking ahead to Christ’s return, or looking back to His arrival as the babe in the manger. Last week I wrote about looking ahead, this week about looking back.
Sunday, as we sang the old familiar carols, and came to where the shepherds were nearly dazed with the host of angels on high gloriously announcing the birth of Christ, the new born King, I fell into the place of one of those men. My heart beat with excitement. Awe filled my senses as the quiet night became unlike any other before or since. Astounding.
When the music ended, I struggled to follow the next few announcements, for I was thinking what an ordinary day it had probably been for the sheep herders, until it wasn’t. And then, I imagined myself having carried out another ordinary day here at my home, and just before going to bed, stepping outside to take a glance at the nighttime sky to find there a heavenly host, and a wondrous holy announcement. Imagine…ordinary to extraordinary in the length of one breath.
The thought of ordinary to extraordinary reminded me that because of Jesus coming, dying for our sins, and leaving behind, as He promised, the Comforter…as our guide, Christians, in a quieter, intimate way, often experience ordinary to extraordinary.
It happens in an instant to those who try to live in obedience to God, to those who sit quietly with Him, read His Word and pray.
Just this morning during such time, I named all the people in our family, and mentioned all the future spouses of our young grandchildren, and prayed in earnest that each and every one would love God more than I do. Oh, that hurt, for who wants to be the one who loves the Lord the least? In a sense, I did not, but yet I did. It was a difficult prayer. I prayed it again. And in that moment, within a breath, the deepening Presence of the Holy Spirit took the ordinary to the extraordinary. When it comes to trying to describe it, it seems additional words are needed in our lexicon.
I cannot help but wonder if such moments are somewhat similar to what the shepherds experienced on the ordinary/extraordinary night of the announcement and the praising of the heavenly host:
“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.
This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying.
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” Luke 2:10-14
May you have a God blessed Christmas.
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