Week 2 – Day 1 – Monday, December 5, 2016.
Read II Corinthians 8:9; John 6:38 SOAP John 6:38 – It meant leaving Heaven
MONDAY 2 CORINTHIANS 8:9 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. JOHN 6:38 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.
O – Jesus had it all – His Father’s love, a place in Heaven by His side, and the honor and glory deserved by the Son of God. YET – that’s a huge word. Despite it all, but. YET – for my sake, he became poor. He chose this. For someone else. For EVERYONE else. For our sins. He CHOSE to become poor, to be nothing, to be rejected – SO THAT by His choice, I would become rich, blessed, a child of God. His choice was based on following the will of God. It wasn’t the matter of choosing one good thing over another, but a choice of ease or a choice of poverty, rejection, and death. And He chose that. For me. To do the will of His Father. I’m reminded of the old gospel hymn that I learned as a child, “He left the Splendor of Heaven, knowing His destiny was the lonely hill of Golgotha, there to lay down His life for me…. If that isn’t love…..” What love.
A – Following the will of God. Jesus was willing to give up everything He had – to become poor. Not only willing – but He DID that. He chose to follow God’s will, despite what it meant for Him, personally, physically, socially, status-wise. From heaven’s splendor – to a stable. Knowing that His choice, His decision to follow God’s will would lead Him to Calvary – to die.
Do I follow God, realizing choices – and follow Him anyway? Do I willingly, or grudgingly, follow? If I know that my choice to follow would lead to inconvenience, do I willingly follow? No matter certain death, but inconvenience? Oh, that I would willingly follow – NO MATTER the consequences for me.
Do I take Christ’s coming to earth lightly? Do I see a precious baby, wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger, in those “touched up” scenes, or do I see a baby, in a cold stable, with the knowledge that this was only the beginning of a life of choices that would ultimately lead to death on a cross? When I read the words to the song for today, I only see the beginning of the difficult choices and realizations that Christ must have had, from the beginning, “squalor, anguish, shame, humble, betrayal, punished, suffering, interceding…… GLORY!” Oh, may I come to the full realization of what Christ did for me – and live today, making the choice to follow His will no matter what comes my way.
P – Father God, bring me to the place of serving You willingly, whatever You ask. May I choose with a willing heart, open to Your leading, and to the needs around me. May I not think of my own desires, but what You desire. May I not think of my own convenience, but Your Son’s willingness to come to earth knowing His destiny. May I not think of the time, or the effort, or the effects on me – but the eternal effects of following You. Father, may You be glorified in my life today, and may I follow my Immanuel with an open, willing heart.
From the squalor of a borrowed stable, (David Wesley) –https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYXFU8HugMY
From the squalor of a borrowed stable,
By the Spirit and a virgin’s faith;
To the anguish and the shame of scandal
Came the Saviour of the human race.
But the skies were filled with the praise of heaven,
Shepherds listen as the angels tell
Of the Gift of God come down to man
At the dawning of Immanuel.
King of heaven now the Friend of sinners,
Humble servant in the Father’s hands,
Filled with power and the Holy Spirit,
Filled with mercy for the broken man.
Yes, He walked my road and He felt my pain,
Joys and sorrows that I know so well;
Yet His righteous steps give me hope again –
I will follow my Immanuel.
Through the kisses of a friend’s betrayal,
He was lifted on a cruel cross;
He was punished for a world’s transgressions,
He was suffering to save the lost.
He fights for breath, He fights for me,
Loosing sinners from the claims of hell;
And with a shout our souls are free –
Death defeated by Immanuel.
Now He’s standing in the place of honour,
Crowned with glory on the highest throne,
Interceding for His own beloved
Till His Father calls to bring them home!
Then the skies will part as the trumpet sounds
Hope of heaven or the fear of hell;
But the Bride will run to her Lover’s arms,
Giving glory to Immanuel!