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Luke 2:1 And it came to pass in those days that
a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.
2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing
In reading the above passage, let us draw five
applications of the text for our lives today that will be a source of
encouragement to us during this :
Explain–God actually used a decree and a census
from a pagan Roman government to position Joseph and Mary for the in
Apply–We are not to be discouraged by what
happens in the world around us or through human governments. God is still God
and the heart of the King is in the hand of the Lord. He is sovereign and can
trump the plans of man in order to fulfill His purposes.
Explain–Joseph returned to
Apply–During this Christmas season, be encouraged to know that God can do something strategic in and through you as you return home to be with family. Realize that there may be positive deposits from your heritage of which you are still unaware. Also go with the knowledge that you can be light, love, and life to others.
Relationships are so important and especially within our own family. Have faith that God is at work as you go.
Matthew 28: 18-20: "All
authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all
nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the
Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I
have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the
Explain–I imagine all of us have thought of the
how that donkey ride fared for pregnant Mary. Surely it was a tough trip. Yet,
it was part of God’s plan and had to happen in order for Christ to be born in
Apply–We can be pregnant with the things of God in our lives as well. We carry something that God has placed within us. At times, we may become impatient thinking, when will this ever happen. It actually can quiet a miserable time. Yet, it is worth the "donkey ride" so to speak, to bring it forth. We simply have to to work and guide us where we need to be to deliver what we are carrying for Him.
Explain–Though the hotel was empty, God’s
ability to create a spectacular setting was still at work. Don’t be discouraged
if men have shut the door on you. God opens doors that no man can shut. It
could be that you are out of a job, or recently relocated, or facing some other
obstacle. Allow the movement and work of God during the first Christmas season
to encourage you during this holiday season.
Explain–There was no for Jesus. Is there room in our homes for him this Christmas? Are we making sure there is room for Jesus?
Apply–Think of the blessing the Innkeeper missed because he was unable to find room for Jesus.
Illustrate– I heard the story about an event
that happened one Christmas in an affluent neighborhood in
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