I admit. I don't always stop to think about the passage of Scripture I'm reading. It's easy to just skim past them after hearing them again and again and again for years. But the Word of God is living and active--and it applies specifically to me today in a way it didn't three years ago. And twenty years from now, that same passage will be filled with God's Spirit and working in my life in a new way once again.
I was reminded of this as we enjoyed a beautiful Christmas musical presented by a church in our conference. It depicted the story of Mary and Joseph in a fresh way, delving into their thoughts and emotions, the criticisms and pressures felt by the onlookers. And it made me think.
My husband has been writing a modern day version of the Nativity story for our teens to tell our congregation on Christmas Eve. (I won't go into the reason he's still working on it, other than to say I may have bumped the power button while dusting, causing him to lose his almost completed work.) As we talked about the details of the birth of Christ and what the implications would be if it occurred today, in 2010, I was struck by the thoughts running through my mind.
If one of my teen girls came up to me and told me they were pregnant and then went on to say it was the Son of God in their womb, I'm fairly certain I would call them crazy.
"WHAT IN THE WORLD are you talking about, Girl?! Honey, if you're pregnant, it's ok. We can deal with this. We'll help you through it."
"Melanie, I am still pure, I promise you. An angel of the Lord appeared to me and scared the crap out of me. He told me I was going to give birth to son--God's son. I know it's unbelievable, but it's true. I've never been so certain of anything ever before."
"You've got to be kidding me."
"Don't you remember all of those Old Testament passages we've studied together? So many of them talk of our Messiah and give details on his entrance into this world. THIS is IT. I've been chosen. Will you support me?"
Wow. I never thought about it like that. It's easy to believe a story that happened thousands of years ago. But taking the concepts and applying them to my reality points out my lack of faith. It helps me identify with Mary's family and friends. And yet it shames me. Why wouldn't I believe her?
God is so good. He chooses those who are weak, those who the world ignores, rejects, despises. He choses those who have nothing so that when His Will is accomplished, everyone will know it was God's work--not man's. To Him be the Glory.
Jesus, I pray you would continue to reveal your story to me in new ways this Christmas. Open my eyes to the truth and bring my spirit closer to the faith I lack. Amen.