Who is Sam T. Sirhc?
Monday, December 18
When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose.
Have you ever been Black Friday shopping? If so, you know that if you attempt to go out and take advantage of the many sales and specials without a determined purpose to get exactly what you’re looking for, you will get overwhelmed by the enormity of the day. You’ll come home exhausted and beat up after having spent the day fighting the crowds and traffic. You must approach that day with preparation and determination if you hope to accomplish anything at all. Ironically and unfortunately, you must approach Christmas the same way. Many people will tell you that they know the ‘true meaning’ of Christmas but still look forward to it with dread because of all of the extracurricular things that have become associated with it throughout the years. This year, your mission is to…get Christmas! Determine to keep the proper perspective on Christmas with same tenacity that you would have if you were Black Friday shopping. Refuse to allow the distractions of the season keep you from truly celebrating your Savior’s birth.
Tuesday, December 19
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Have you ever thought about what the first Christmas looked like from Heaven’s perspective? Most people are under the impression that only Gospels of Matthew and Luke have anything recorded about the birth of Christ…nothing could be further from the truth. Just like with every other passage or topic in Scripture, if we don’t seek the Heavenly perspective of the account we’re not getting the fullness of that truth. Take another look at today’s Scripture text…from the Heaven’s viewpoint. These few verses give the account of Jesus’ coming to Earth from the eternal side rather than the historical side. Jesus had always, from before time began, been with God the Father, but because of the lost state in which mankind had fallen into, He put Himself into a physical body and came to Earth to rescue the human race. What a beautiful picture, suddenly Heaven was without the Son, but He would soon return, with many scars. Those scars were the sign that the redemptive act had taken place and your eternal destiny with Him was assured. Think about that the next time you tell someone, “Merry Christmas!”
Wednesday, December 20
8 And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear.
Shepherds? Why shepherds? Of all the people in the world to announce the birth of the Savior to, God chose shepherds. In the modern, glamorized retelling of the Christmas story, the shepherds were gentle, clean, well mannered men who were enjoying a peaceful evening on a hillside doing nothing more than star-gazing while the sheep laid next to them without a care in the world. Like many other misconceptions about this wonderful night, this account is extremely lacking in fullness of detail. Sheep were dirty, smelly, and like most other types of livestock, hard to keep in check. So what makes you think that a shepherd was much different? So, why appear to shepherds? It was their hearts. Shepherds’ lives were guiding and protecting the sheep. So who else would the ‘Good Shepherd’ choose to reveal Himself to. He appeared to the very people who’s character He would be emulating during His life on Earth. Just like a sheep, before you met the Savior, you were a dirty, smelly, and disobedient mess. Jesus, with His heart of passion for you, came and led you out of your mess and placed you under His protection and guidance. What a beautiful picture of His loving and compassionate nature. Today, submit your life to His protection and guidance because He cares for you.
Thursday, December 21
1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want…5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
When you read the 23rd Psalm, do you think of Christmas? Most people don’t. However, if you’ll look a little deeper into this popular passage, you’ll see a beautiful picture of who Christ came to Earth to be. Throughout scripture, the Bible refers to people as sheep, over whom God is the Shepherd. When David was recording this Psalm, he brought special attention to the fact that the Shepherd had a table prepared for him. So if he was referring to himself as the sheep, what would he (the sheep) eat out of? The answer is…a manger. By Jesus being born in a manger, He was fulfilling the prophesy found in the 23rd Psalm. He is our Shepherd and He gave His life to satisfy our every need. He placed Himself on the table so that you could receive everything from Him that you need to live a victorious life. When is the last time you pulled a chair up to the ‘manger’? What an amazing picture of His amazing love that began on that first Christmas day.
Friday, December 22
2 Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, 2 saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
The account of the ‘Wise Men’ is an excellent example of way to approach the Christmas season. First, they knew who they were seeking. They didn’t travel for two years just to make a big scene and get recognition for being kings. They were looking for the Messiah and their journey was not going to be complete until they found Him. Secondly, they were coming to worship. They were intent on making sure that, when they found Him, Jesus received the honor He was so worthy of. As Christmas day approaches and your 2017 Christmas journey nears it’s climax, it is important to keep in mind who you are seeking and why you are seeking Him. There is a reason that these men are referred to as wise. Wise people keep their priorities in the proper order and maintained a clear purpose. Are you going to be a ‘wise’ person this Christmas? If so, keep seeking Him as your number one priority and worshipping Him as the purpose behind why you’re celebrating this year.
Saturday, December 23
“Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
Many people get the wrong idea when it comes to why worship is so important to God. If you truly know Him, you understand that He is the most selfless person you could ever know. Through a working relationship with Him, you’ll see His heart for people and His compassionate see them touched and changed. On the other hand, if you aren’t in proper relationship with Him, you can fall into religion and start feeling like your worship is more like brown-nosing and stroking His ego. When you understand His heart you’ll find that He desires your worship because He knows that you become like what you worship. He created you in His image has the very best in store for you. Living a lifestyle of worship will transform you into who He has designed you to be and will enable you to do what He purposed for you to do. So the next time you do something to bring honor to Him, know that you’re not just benefiting Him, you’re transforming you!
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