Advent Week Two - Precious Gifts

Week two of Advent! How quickly we are marking off those calender days. I am sharing today as part of the "Advent 2012 - 40 Days of Seeking Him" meme sponsored by Trish at "Upon This Rock" and Laura at "Day by Day In Our World". I enjoy being a part of this group each year as it helps me to reflect on what God is doing in our home and through us during this busy time of year. As I have preciously mentioned in posts, it is one of two very busy times for our household as we serve in full-time ministry. My husband has very full days all week. We get little time for family moments during this season, so we grab what we can and partake in the church's activities together. Have you ever stopped and thought about how busy your church's leadership team is during this time? Please take a moment and pray for them and their families. Think about how God might use you to bless them. Think about how God might use you as a volunteer to help spread the Gospel during this season. We find many hearts softened and more open to hearing the message during the Holiday Season. Perhaps it is the baby? "Who can resist a baby", one man said. So with such beautiful outcomes, I find myself cringing of even using the word "busy", because it is really a "surge in activity" that brings about so many gifts for our family. We have witnessed miracles during these first weeks of Advent. We have seen lives changed. A play called "Christmas Comes to Detroit Louie" was performed. The actors were so humble, and felt they were doing so little. God however, took their willingness to share the message in a creative way, to change lives both in the cast and the audience. Glorious choir anthems have been sung and brought shouts of "Hallejuah" for the spirit moved among the hearts of each one present. Band members played new renditions of carols and hymns. Seeds are being planted in the hearts of these young men. Youth gathered for fellowship over some hot pizza. They need time, love and attention from adults not judgement. They are teaching my husband and I so much. It is amazing what can happen if you give the gift of time to a young person! We are watching them grow and change their lives in various areas. It is an awesome gift to us in return for our time. They also attended an Advent Bible Study with us that our Senior Pastor is presenting.It is laid back, and we share and discuss as she leads. This week we discussed the point at which Mary had to decide. Have you ever thought about the fact she could have said "No"? She came to a moment where she presented herself willing and open to the will of God. There was a moment when she fully understood His love and her life was forever changed. Mind knowledge of Christ is not enough. We have to have a heart to heart relationship with Him. We come to a life changing moment when we die to ourselves and accept all that he is, and we offer ourselves as willing servants for His will. Have you had your own Mary turning point? One where God alone transformed your life and you were anew? He is with you, and is waiting.
"For God so loved the world, that He gave his one and only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16
He loves YOU that much! Let's return to looking at some more ways people gave of themselves. Bell Choirs played and sang for those cooped up in Nursing Homes this week. The members of these choirs gave of their afternoons and talents.They were blessed and so were the those who attended the concerts. Those folks were glad to know someone cared. They heard the story from Luke. Reminded that God is still with them. If they did not know Him, they now had the chance to do so. How beautiful these gifts were. Of course, when a gift is selfless and blessed by heaven, it IS going to be beautiful. Men and women gave of their time and talents today to build sets for an upcoming live nativity. Yes, carpenters, woodworkers and artists had gifts to share with their director and for their God, so that again, the Gospel could be shared with the city. I look forward to reporting back to you what God does with what they gave! So I now ask you: "What will YOU bring the Christ Child"?