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Believe and Ponder the Word of God

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“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19

“When God reveals truth to you, by whatever means, that is a divine encounter.” – Henry Blackaby.

 

  • Good morning!  Grab your Bible, a pen, and your journal and find a cozy place to sit. It’s time to meet with your Savior!
  • Read Luke 2:8-20. Write verse 19 in your journal. If you haven’t done so this December, I encourage you to take some time to read all of Luke 1 and 2.

Believe and Ponder the Word of God

One of my favorite Christmas songs is “Mary Did You Know?” by Mark Lowry. This song asks evocative questions of Mary, the young woman chosen by God to carry His only begotten Son. Did she know that when she kissed her baby she kissed the face of God? Or that this sleeping child she was holding is the Great I Am?

As I read about Mary in Luke 1 and 2, I want to learn from her and be more like her. Two things about her stand out: She was quick to believe God, and she pondered the things of God in her heart.

Mary Believed. In Luke chapter 1, we first read about Zechariah who doubted the Angel and the message he delivered. Then we read about Mary. An Angel appears to Mary and tells her she will conceive by the Holy Spirit and will give birth to the Son of God. Mary is one of the few people in the Bible who believes God right away. She says, “I am the Lord’s Servant, may it be to me as you have said” (Luke 1:38).

I want to be like Mary and take God at His Word. When we open the Bible and read it, God speaks to us. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

What is He saying to you today, during this Christmas season? Above all, I hope you hear you are dearly loved. He sent his only Begotten Son so you may live with Him forever.

Mary Pondered. In Luke chapter 2  the Angel of the Lord returns, appearing to shepherds and announcing the birth of the promised Savior. After the shepherds find Mary and Joseph and Jesus, they tell everyone they know about what they have seen and heard. In contrast, the Bible says that “Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart” (Luke 2:1).

Mary was so wise at a young age. Incredible things happened to her, and she tucked them away, even the things she didn’t understand, and pondered them in her heart.

Like Mary, I want to be more introspective, meditating on the things of God that my thoughts will spill over into what I say and do. All too often, I snap at my husband and children and say things I regret. I want to hide God’s Word in my heart so I might not sin against Him (Psalm 119:11). And be “quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19). I pray that God will “set a guard over my mouth… [and] keep watch over the door of my lips” (Psalm 141:3).

God chose this sweet, young woman named Mary to be the mother of the Messiah. Let us look to Scripture and pray that we can be more like her, believing God’s Word and treasuring the things of God in our hearts.

Questions to Ponder

  • What attribute of Jesus will you ponder today?
  • What is one promise of God that you will focus on believing today?

Faith-Filled Idea

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  • Teach your children the joy of giving by giving gifts to those less fortunate.

Our favorite Christmas activity is packing Shoebox Gifts for Operation Christmas Child. Samaritan’s Purse delivers the gift-filled shoeboxes to children around the world who would otherwise never receive a gift. These gifts have the power to transform the lives of children and their families through the Good News of Jesus Christ!

How to Pack a Shoebox:

Start with an average size shoebox. Decide if you will pack for a boy or a girl. Choose from three age categories ranging from 2 to 14 years old. Fill it with gifts! Start with something the child will love like a stuffed animal, doll, a toy truck or a ball with a pump. Next, fill it with school supplies, non-liquid hygiene items and accessories like underwear or socks. These items we take for granted may be the most exciting part of the gift!

I shop for items to pack throughout the year. I look for sweet, stuffed animals and other fun toys on sale after the holidays. I shop with coupons for toothpaste and toothbrushes and I buy all the school supplies when they are marked down during the back to school sales. You can also make your dollar stretch by buying large packages of socks, underwear, washcloths, combs, bar soap, etc. and dividing them between the boxes you pack.

I love the impact Operation Christmas Child has on my children. My daughter tells me over and over, “It makes me feel so good to pack OCC shoeboxes. It makes me feel good to help kids who don’t have anything.”
We started with packing one box, the next year we packed one box for each of our children, then one for each age and gender. Our love for this ministry and the children grows each year and is reflected in the number of boxes we pack! This year, our family packed 15 boxes, all for the glory of God!

For detailed information about packing the shoeboxes visit: Samaritan’s Purse.

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Join the Community!

Answer today’s question in the comment box so we can all get to know one another!

-How has God blessed you this Christmas season?

Jennifer Valdois

Jennifer Valdois

Jennifer has been married to Todd, the love of her life, since 1999.They have a lovely daughter and two adventurous sons. She found her purpose, calling, greatest challenge and greatest joy when she began home-schooling them in 2012.

Jennifer is a Colorado Springs native and each year,looks forward to summer time when she experiments with vegetable gardening and escapes to the Rocky Mountains for camping trips with her family.

She is trusting Jesus to redeem her life and crown her with love and compassion as He promises in Psalm 103:2-5.
Jennifer Valdois

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11 Comments

  1. This is so good! I want to. E a Mary too. Thanks Jennifer!

  2. Thank you Jennifer for this wonderful study! Mary is so inspirational and you shared some very poignant points that are great and perfect for this time of year! I was raised Catholic, so we learned a lot about Mary and focused on her quite a bit, so I appreciate seeing her spotlighted here! She is such a role model for purely trusting in the Lord! Thank you!

  3. I love this study Jennifer! Thank you for reminding me to focus on Jesus today! I just love reading about Mary! And I really appreciated your description of how to put together the shoeboxes. I have always felt overwhelmed with the busyness of Christmas, telling myself that we will start the shoeboxes next year when I am more organized! I love that you shop for them all year!! That is much more doable!!! Thank you so much Jennifer! Love you lots my friend!!

  4. I love this Jennifer! I long to be like Mary and to ponder the goodness of God more. I hate it when I am too busy to focus on how God has blessed me. His goodness surrounds me all the time and I want to let Him know I appreciate Him!

    • Thank you, Deb!! I loved studying Mary too and the way she was obedient and faithful.

  5. I love that you mention OCC too. I don’t enjoy shopping, and Christmas shopping saps every last bit of my energy. Half the time, I don’t get the boxes packed in time, so I have just ended up donating them elsewhere. I love the idea of starting early though. That way, all we have to do at Christmas time is sort through the gifts and pack them (which is the fun part!).

    • Yes, shopping early is the way to go! After we packed our boxes, I felt convicted that we should have packed a couple for the older boys. I ran to my room and looked in my supply box and I had just enough school supplies and hygiene items for two more boxes. All I had to do was run to Target for 2 soccer balls to deflate. (I already bought mini pumps at the dollar store with good intentions). It really makes it fun!

  6. You make some really good points about Mary. I don’t spend much time studying her or teaching my girls about her, but I think I should. Actually, they’d enjoy reading this. ?

    • Thank you, Heather! I felt the same way after writing this!

  7. I always love thinking about Mary pondering too. Such a sweet topic.
    I love how you shared with everyone how to pack a shoebox! This is such a wonderful ministry! Love you Jennifer?

    • Thank you so much, Tara!!
      Love you, too! 🙂

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