Wednesday, December 10, 2008

What If It Were You?

Today is December 10th. May people both Christians and non are preparing to celebrate Christmas. While I don't celebrate the "Christmas holiday" like many other Christians do with trees, decorations and gifts, I do acknowledge, accept and appreciate the birth of Christ. Had He not been born He couldn't have dwelt among us giving us an example of how we ought to live and more importantly He couldn't have died on Calvary's cross for the remission of our sins and rose again on the 3rd day with ALL power. I do believe every word in the bible to be true including the story of the birth of Christ. Having said this, I decided to revisit the story of the birth of Christ and take a closer look at it and all of the many lessons that can be learned from it.

In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee,to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you." Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end."
"How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?" (Luke 1:26-34)
First of all, let me begin by saying "Thank God for Mary". Had an angel came to me while I was yet still a virgin and told me I was going to give birth, I probably would have asked him if he had the right Mary. Has God every told you anything or called you to do a work that you couldn't envision yourself doing? Imagine how Mary must have felt. Many people mistakenly attribute undue credit and praise to Mary. They pray to her and worship her when in all actuality Mary was nothing more than a vessel. Had Mary not carried Jesus, God would have found someone else to do the job. This post is by no mean written to praise Mary. Mary heard the voice of the Lord and obeyed as we all should.

Brothers, if you were engaged to marry a woman and you knew that you hadn't slept with her, do you think you would be able to go through with your wedding plans if you learned that she was pregnant? Let's take it a step further and consider what you would think if she told you she immaculately conceived the Son of God. If you are anything like me you probably would have called the wedding off being certain that she was unfaithful.

Both Joesph and Mary faced extremely difficult tasks. Mary conceived a child during a time where people were stoned for committing sexual transgressions. Everyone knew that she wasn't married yet she was pregnant. I imagine that Mary got dirty looks and heard whispers as she walked through the town. I could also imagine Joesph's friends and other townspeople telling him not to marry Mary and that she was "defiled". But the two of them carried on with their assignments anyway. Do you think you would be able to continue with what God gave you to do if everyone around you were whispering in doubt that what you were doing was really of God?

As I think about Joesph - the step-father of Jesus, I imagine that it was very difficult for him. He knew that God was the father of Christ and that he was just filling in. Do you think that maybe just maybe Joesph doubted his ability or worried that he wouldn't measure up. It would only be human for Joesph to think that way.

Mary and Joesph had their hands full. To be frank, I don't think that I could have done as well in either of their positions. I thank God that He has called us all to a distinct and different purpose. Sure, there may be many ministers but not all serve the same purpose for the Kingdom of God. There are deliverance ministries, outreach ministries, substance abuse ministries, etc. Mary and Joesph were created for the ministry of raising Jesus.

Mary asked Gabriel "How can this be". Has God ever showed you a glimpse of your future or used someone to speak a prophetic word into your life and all you could manage to ask was "how can this be"? I've been there before. But it's not up to us to ask or know how everything can be. It is up to us to obey the voice of the Lord and follow His Spirit.

So as I close, I ask you to examine yourself and ask yourself "What if it were you". Do you think you would have been able to live up to the assignment? Are you able to stand alone on the Word of God no matter what the situation looks like, regardless of what all sense and reason tells you? If so, God bless you. Please pray for me and the rest of us that cannot confess to always being this steadfast. If you (like myself) are not always able to walk blindly or if you do not think that you would have done as well as Mary and Joesph did in their assignments, join me in prayer that we may all be who called called us to be and that we are able to trust Him with all of our hearts, minds and souls because one day it will be us called upon to do that which appears to be "undoable". Remember, that which is impossible with man is possible with God and we can do ALL things through Jesus Christ who strengthens us.



Thy Word Is A Lamp Unto My Feet said...

Hello Shanita

First 'thank you' for stopping by my blog and your kind words.

Your post is pretty powerful and very insightful. Indeed, it is a question worth asking:what if it were me? May we be found faithful!

Nice meeting you Shanita. I will be stopping in the future.

God bless!


A Free Spirit Butterfly said...

I pray for you and I know that my walk with the Lord is not always on the straight path, I take each day as it comes. God forgives and that along with his unconditional love sustains and strengthens me.

Love, peace and blessings.
PS awesome post!

Nicole said...

Hi Shanita! Thanks for stopping by my blog. It sounds as if we are the same age. If you don't mind me asking...You said you don't celebrate the "Christmas Holiday." I am curious as to what you and your family traditions are for Christmas and what brought you to this place. I am very interested in what you have to say and to hear your thoughts. I do believe that Christmas has been really commercialized.


Spring Fricks said...

Hi Shanita,

Very powerful post. Answer the call of God is truly a weighty gift but one we are called to do. It's also something that's dear to my heart. Thank you for this post.

Shanita Waters said...

Hi Myriam - I'm so glad you could stop by.

@ Free Spirit - Thank you so much for your prayers. They are turly appreciated.

@ Nicole - we don't really do anything out of the ordinary for Christmas. We go over the story of the birth of Christ with the kids so that they will know the truth and not get caught up in the commercialization of the holiday when they grow older. Then we carry on as we would any other day.

We chose not to celebrate Christmas mainly because of the pagan origin of Christmas. I reallize that (most) Chrisitans that celebrate the holiday today are simply celebrating the birth of our Lord (I don't see anythign wrong with that. We should celebrate Him everyday.) But I believe once we know the truth that we are accountable for our actions thereafter.

Most of our relatives still celebrate Christmas and have a difficult time understanding how we could go from Christmas to no- Christmas virtually over night. We still get together with family during the holidays, we just don't participate in the Christmas festivities.

I started to do a post about why we don't celebrate Christmas but God led me this way instead.

Also, Jesus never told us to celebrate His birth. He actually made a very humble entry to the world. He did tell us to commorate His death (communion).

Thanks for asking... I gave you the short version. **smiles**


Keith said...

My Pastor preached a sermon on this very thing this past Father's day...and I had to would
have been hard for me to do and even harder for me to believe. I'm so thankful that GOD chose the right people with the right hearts to do an extroidinary thing..To conceive and raise the Son of Man.
I loved this post Shanita.


Sister Shanita,

Great post, as always!!!

Stay endowed.

GOD Bless~~~

Parkay said...

Nice post lady. And to answer your question....nope, I would probably have asked the Lord was he sure about this because in my present state, I would think I'm not worthly of such a calling. But with God's grace and through him things can change even in me. I am sure of that! PEACE