December 11th – Sermon Plus+

Categories: Blog,Sermon Plus+

The Wonder of Advent: Mary’s Response to Christ’s Birth

“Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.” ― G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

Sermon Plus.001Have you lost some of the wonder of the story of Christmas? If so, how can you reclaim the wonder in God inserting himself into human history?

“And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.”  – Luke 2:18-19 ESV –

Everyone was in wonder at what they heard, but Mary treasured and pondered these things in her heart. What are some ways that you can create time and space to personally to dedicate to pondering what Jesus has done for us this Christmas season? How can you lead your family or friends in making room to be in wonder of God’s story?

There was about a 400 year gap between the last old testament prophet and the coming of Christ. After such a long time of silence all of a sudden an Angel appears and announces the coming of a new Kingdom. Imagine being around in the time that Mary and Joseph got the news that they would be parenting the messiah, and even stranger than that the Angel tells her that she would give birth as a virgin. Her first response in Luke 1:34 is: “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”.

Would you be able to say that God is faithful after 400 years? 

Is there anything in your life right now that feels like you have been waiting this long to see something change (sin, physical issues, broken relationships…)?

The angel’s response to Mary is fitting one in Luke 1:35-37: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born[e] will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.”

The angel tells Mary that with God all things are possible. How does this statement resonate with you? 

Is there any place in your life, family, or community that you have limited what God is able to do?

Application/Our Response to the wonder of Christmas:

Jesus came to earth not just to be born as a baby, but also to grow up and sacrifice himself as a ransom for many.

Do you believe your sin is serious enough that Jesus had to come and endure the cross?

God knows every detail of your life including your sin and yet somehow still loves you and calls you his child. Does this cause you to be in wonder?

How does the wonder of advent lead you to a place of submission and surrender?

How does the wonder of advent lead you to worship?

In order for us to believe in Christ in Smyrna, DE the message had to get here from Jerusalem over the past 2000 years. Wonder should lead us to enter into God’s mission. How is God calling to you engage in his mission of making him known to the world this advent season?