Tag Archives: Adults Need Christmas

One Good Reason You Should Hurry More (#AdultsNeedChristmas)

hurry more at ChristmasChristmas time is here! Between parties and packing, shopping and wrapping, we have a bunch of rushing to do. Even our carols are characterized by words like “busy” and “bustle” (which means “to move in an energetic or noisy manner,” in case you were wondering).

There was a bustling at the first Christmas too. But this expedited pace wasn’t a rush to the next office party, or a last minute baking frenzy for an unforeseen cookie exchange.

No. This was a sacred rush, a hurrying of heavenly proportions. This was the shepherds race to experience the divine:

“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, 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 heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.”

Luke‬ ‭2:8-16‬ ‭NIV‬‬

The shepherds dropped everything they were doing and HURRIED OFF to find the Savior.

It wasn’t a Black Friday sale scurry.

It wasn’t a distant-relatives house relay.

It was a rushing to experience Jesus.

Adults need this kind of holy hurry.

This heavenly hastening to align ourselves nearer to the Savior of the world.

hurry to JesusWe need to re-ignite that kind of excitement, urgency to chase down the sacred like the shepherds did.

The shepherds abandoned their expectations to advance toward the eternal. Jesus’ coming was life-changing enough to take some time off.

To drop everything to experience proximity.

To then tell others about it, and spread the good news of great joy for all people.

Lord, the only thing I want to hurry up for this Christmas is you. Give me that sense of unsettled urgency to experience Your presence above all else.

Campfire Check In?

What will you let go of in order to experience proximity to the Savior this season?

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What Adults Need at Christmas: A Heart for the Lost

rediscover a heart for the lostThis morning I sat cuddled on my couch with cocoa and Christmas cookies, reading my Christmas devotional book. I was practicing stillness, making room for Jesus in a full day. I had to turn off White Christmas and ignore the gifts that needed to be wrapped. I had to silence my inner to-do list and just listen.

A dear friend from our church recently blessed me with The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp. The pages of this book presented a challenge for me to do something “that would be venturing big for God.” (Day 11)

I began to imagine what would be that difficult thing for me. What I could step outside of my comfort zone to encounter our faithful God in a powerful way? I glanced up from my reading and saw my neighborhood in the crisp light. So many houses, filled with couples and families all preparing for winter’s chill. In my minds eye, though, I saw ablaze all the homes that no preparation for eternity. From my knowledge (and I am not trying to be judgmental here) much of our neighborhood is destined for eternal separation from God.

My heart has ached for this neighborhood before. I know families swallowed by pride and culture and religions that lead to bondage. I take my dog on walks, passing homes filled with the riches of this world; my heart is heavy for they do not know the riches of a relationship with Christ.

Earlier this month, I motioned to simplify the holiday to-do list. After consulting with me, myself, and I, it seemed like a good idea to nix the neighborly gifts this year. After all, we go all out to love on our neighborhood for Halloween, and have prioritized sharing sweet blessings every May Day.

In my simplification, I was serving myself (and arguably my family). However, my consensus eliminated Jesus, once again, from HIS ideas for Christmas time.

I am convinced one way adults can rediscover the wonder of Christmas is by rediscovering Christ’s broken heart for the lost. Globally or locally, there are people in our path who need the Savior. It is why He came, after all:seek the lost

“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10

Sharing simple gifts with my neighbors is one way I can invite them to our church’s Christmas Eve service. It also promotes relationship, displays kindness, and prayerfully provides openness to conversations over the fence when the weather gets nice again. It is during such conversations, I pray, God will steer toward our joy and purpose in Christ.

Like a redeemed Grinch, I think my heart grew three sizes today!

I am not so much burdened as I am hopeful for God’s great grace and mercy to bring light and salvation to the lost this Christmas. 2016 is a year of hope, I believe, and I choose to act upon such belief. My heart is not made weary by war and refugees, electoral candidates and the decline of the church. On the contrary, having a renewed desire to see the lost found in Christ gives me energy and excitement. Because I know the salvation of the world, both spiritually and physically, is not up to me. It is simply my privilege to join my God in the work He is already doing.

I know what my challenge is today (thank you, Ann Voskamp for prompting me thus). I am joining Jesus’ mission by putting neighborly gifts, along with time spent in prayer for each family, back on my Christmas bucket list this year. It is a small service in comparison to the cross, but that act of love has already been finished. I just get to tell the life-saving story.

“Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Philippians 2:1-11

Join me in finding inspiration and hope in these lyrics: “The giver of life was born in the night, revealing God’s glorious plan to save the world!” (Who Would Have Dreamed by ason Hansen and Bob Kauflin, Sovereign Grace Music)

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