Monday, December 11, 2017

Really Good News

The Shepherds watching over their fields by night were the cast offs of society. The angel appears to them and gives them good news. Mary and Joseph, though now highly esteemed by us, were not even high enough on the social structure to secure a room for a night in a crowded town. But Mary is about to give birth to good news.
         If you are down and out, sad, despised, marginalized, lightly esteemed by others or have a poor view of yourself, guess what, I have really good news for you. Jesus is coming. Jesus has come. He is here. His Words are faithful and true. His Spirit is imparted to you.

You may not be highly esteemed by others, or by yourself, and maybe even for good reason, right? But that does not matter if you are found in Christ. The opinion that matters is the one that Jesus renders and He has really good news for you. Through the remission of sins, He counts you His brother, His sister. His Father is your Father. His Spirit is in you. His joy, and hope and even His glory are lavished on you. That is really good news. 
Then, believe Jesus with joy and thanksgiving.


O Lord, our God, who alone is the dispenser of all good things, we acknowledge Your beneficence towards us. You have granted us everlasting life and You have sustained us in this life through Your faithful provision. We thank You for November, and Thanksgiving, a national holiday of Thanksgiving to You, our creator, sustainer, savior, and the preserver of our souls. May gratitude be our key characteristic, for it is Your kindness that is our guide, both in repentance and in our desire to live for You, Who is our good and gracious Father. Amen.   


R&R, Sometimes the military calls this rest and recuperation or rest and recreation. I prefer rest and recreation. I like that word recreation because it is a rendering of re-creation. Re-creation is what the Lord Jesus is doing to the world and it is what He is doing to us as we gather here each Lord’s Day.
         Sabbath Communion is R&R. Are you feeling it? The Lord has given us rest in Jesus. We find rest because we can stop striving. We can stop trying to purge our sins and we can stop trying to save ourselves by our good deeds. Both actions are equally frustrating and impossible.
         When we come to Jesus, we get real forgiveness for real sins. Nothing we can do but say, Thank you, Jesus. When we come to Jesus, we realize that our life in Christ is a life of grace and so we can rest in any work that we do as His work by His Spirit.

         And this leads us to the re-creation part. In Jesus, after His rest, we are new creatures. We are ready for Monday, for the rest of our lives in Jesus. So, glad we get R&R every week!