Ok, here’s my latest turn – enjoy!
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 250 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.
This morning I sent this message out on Twitter and FaceBook: “Waiting to see what God will do at CCR this morning. #ccrministry” Well I thought it would only be fair to at least let you know some of what happened to me.
- Arrived at church did the usual opening and then swept all the junk that our wind storm deposited at the front door.
- I got to sing with the Worship Team today due to several people being very ill. I actually had fun and sounded I fairly OK (one of Del & Aliene’s grand-daughters Liz was there and sounded great!). Got quite a few compliments on my singing – which I think says more about how many hard of hearing people we have at CCR then it does about my voice – but I enjoyed it.
- Did the communion meditation today, which is also not something I do a lot and enjoyed that as well. It was all about being silent to hear God and appreciate all Jesus has done for us.
- Preached of course. The first in a two part series to get us ready for Boundaries that starts on January 10th.
- After church I found out that due to some generous gifts the goal for funding my Mission to Myanmar in March has been exceeded!
- Talked with Ted about the Memorial Service for Marian, which will be on Saturday January 16th at 10:30 AM.
- Went to “Lunch with Louie” at Bobby D’s and enjoyed the fellowship, got a text asking if I could do the Jail Ministry today. Said yes.
- Went back to church to get my Bible and an outline, while waiting to leave made some phone calls and took care of a Benevolence situation in consultation with some others to help out a member in need.
- Did two hours at the jail and had good discussions with the people I saw there. Some of what I shared (I talked about what I preached on) really hit home which was great.
- Just got home and uploaded today’s message and outline to the church webpage and updated it as well.
- Now I’m writing this, and then I’m done!
Thank you Lord for another great Sunday at CCR. For your faithfulness in bringing us new people and allowing us the privilege of helping everyone we can to “Know Him & Make Him Known.”
[What follows is my memory of what I shared tonight at our Christmas Eve service. Knowing how bad my memory can be I hope this is a fairly accurate recreation of my meditation!]
What I want to share with you is something that is very hard to do given the way we celebrate Christmas. But it’s important and I hope you’ll consider it.
What is it? Taking time to be quiet and to ponder or meditate on some of the meaning of Christmas. Look at part of the Christmas Story as presented by the Apostle Luke:
14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” 15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. Luke 2:14-19 (ESV)
Mary treasured up everything that had happened to her and pondered them “in her heart.” That means privately. Alone with her own thoughts Mary chewed over everything that she had seen and heard.
Notice when this happens. Mary has already been visited by the Angel and told she’s going to be the mother of the Messiah. She’s seen her Aunt Elizabeth and seen God’s work in her. She’s carried Jesus to term and has just gone through what must have been, at the very least, a challenging birth of her first born. (We aren’t told if they had a midwife, but if they didn’t I’ll bet Joseph’s prayer life had really improved that night!)
After all those amazing and truly miraculous experiences Mary still hadn’t gotten it all. She was still working through what it really meant to be the mother of the Messiah who would die for the people’s sins.
Mary was blessed above all women but she was still just human. Just like everyone else it’s one thing to receive information and another to really assimilate it. It takes us time to work through what things really mean to us and how they’re going to change our lives.
So Mary privately pondered what God was doing.
What a great idea. What a fantastic way to really mark the birth of the Messiah.
So here’s my suggestion for what it’s worth. Sometime in the next few hours or days take some time alone and ponder what it really means for God to become a man. You’ll never really understand it of course. It’s a wonder of wonders to be sure. But think about it.
And then ask yourself how this all is impacting your life, and how it should be changing it and changing you.
I can’t think of any better way to really mark the birth of Jesus than to take time “To Know Him…and Make Him Known.”
Here’s the second part of my Christmas recording for the Ultimate Sacrifice on KLPZ 1380 in Parker AZ. Hope you enjoy it and have a very Merry Christmas!
I finally got this done and up on YouTube. Tomorrow I go in and record part two.
Here’s a great song from an old Christian group that covered songs and rewrote the lyrics. Apologetix had a good run as an independent group. Enjoy.