“When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.” Matthew 2:10
“Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.” Daniel 12:3
- Oh, how our Savior is waiting to meet with you! Go to your comfortable spot and bring along your Bible, journal, and pen. Don’t forget your favorite drink. For me, it is a coffee with two creams and three sugars. Our Lord has amazing things for us today!
- Please read Matthew 2:1-12. Write verse 10 in your journal. Sit quietly and ponder this verse. If any word stands out, circle or underline it in your journal. Don’t rush this process. Let time stand still as God speaks to you.
The Star of Bethlehem
A few days ago, I heard a new Christmas song from Sidewalk Prophets called, ‘Hey Moon.’ It tells the Christmas story from the perspective of the Star of Bethlehem, and how it had a major role in the Christmas story to point the Magi or Wisemen to Jesus. The Star is a bright thread in the tapestry of Jesus’ life, yet as I began to ponder the purpose of the star, my heart was encouraged and convicted. It had two very profound purposes: leading the Wisemen to Jesus and bringing hope to a dry and desolate land.
There are trillions of stars, each one just a point of light in the sky, until Jesus entered into the picture. We, too, are like the Star of Bethlehem. We were created for the purpose of bringing glory to God. Radiating the joy of our salvation reveals our gracious, loving Savior to those around us. Sharing a smile, saying a genuine “hello,” offering words of encouragement, or leading someone in a prayer of salvation, are a few ways to make a difference in the world.
We can spotlight Jesus just like the star did by being kind and loving to those around us.
Philippians 2:14-15 (CSB) tells us,
Do everything without grumbling and arguing, so that you may be blameless and pure, children of God who are faultless in a crooked and perverted generation, among whom you shine like stars in the world.
Sometimes, the hardest people to love are the ones who need it the most. Recently, I was having a tough day at the grocery store, feeling grouchy and irritable, when a sweet older lady stopped to compliment me for doing a great job with my three youngest children. Her sweet encouragement gave me the energy to finish shopping with joy!
Hope makes an enormous difference, and our world is looking for hope, which may be why Christmas sales, decorations, and music make an earlier appearance every year. Most stores start getting Christmas decorations out at the end of summer! It is amazing how fast it comes! Even the cynical are transported into an enchanted fantasy by the twinkling lights, beautifully bedecked trees, and pretty packages of wishes fulfilled. Hope comes flooding over them.
Though this wonderland is lovely, the true magic of Christmas is in the transformation of people because of the birth of Jesus: Strangers become friends, chaos turns to peace, and stress becomes laughter and joy. It is a season in which the unexpected and most wanted happens.
God has made us to “shine like stars” in this dark and crooked world. Don’t let grumbling or arguing steal your joy and dim your light. Matthew 5:16 instructs, “…let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” The stark contrast of being blameless, pure, and full of good deeds to worldly grumbling, arguing, and self-gratification is a source of hope, and leads those around us to give glory to our Father in Heaven. Jesus cannot be hidden when we truly allow Him to shine through us just like the Star of Bethlehem.
Blessings and Love,
Questions to Ponder
- Are you shining like a star or are you full of complaining and bitterness? If you are struggling to see the positives, lay down the negatives at Jesus’ feet. Recently, I was struggling to see the good things of God. So, I wrote in my journal all the negative things. Afterward, I prayed and left them at the feet of God. Soon next to each of those complaints, God provided. Sometimes, it was a rebuke with Scripture. Other times, He fixed the problem or made me see things from a different perspective. The bottom line was that I no longer saw all the negatives, just His provision.
- How can you shine Jesus to others around you?
(Pick one that will work for you)
Wherever you go—library, grocery store, karate, dance, mall, church–greet people with a smile and say, “Merry Christmas!” I have yet to get a hateful look or a rude remark. Most of the time, people are astonished that I care enough to speak.
As you are going about life, find someone to encourage. It could be a young mom, an older person, a small child, your husband, or your mother-in-law. I pray often that God would allow someone to come across my path into whom I can speak life.
When you go to restaurants, ask your waiter/waitress how you can pray for him/her. It may feel awkward at first, but they will be so appreciative. I have even had one waitress stop and pray with us. Don’t forget to tip well because you are Jesus’ shining star!