Devotion for January 16-18, 2018

What if Jesus came to your place tonight? We don’t often think about God coming in person to be with us. And quite honestly most of the Biblical incidents where God showed up and interacted with people are expressed in terms of the people having fear. Yet the whole impact of the Christmas season was that God came to us in human flesh — God with skin on — the incarnation.

Yet no one was described as being in fear, when Jesus appeared in Bethlehem. Probably because he came in the most human way of all, he was born. He came as an infant, and certainly infants are not scary, not someone who causes fear. But as Jesus attained manhood and began to preach and teach people that the kingdom of God was near at hand and it was time to repent, well then people feared and rejected his message.

Why did Jesus have to come in the flesh? Because of our sin, starting with Adam and Eve, humanity has that ugly sinful side that seems to come out and cause us to be separated from God our Creator. Creature now fears Creator. “Adam where are you?” “I hid because I was naked and afraid”. Do we still hide from God because in His sight our true nature will be revealed with all its faults, imperfections and sins? Knowing who we are makes it likely that most of us will be somewhat reluctant to have Jesus over as a dinner guest tonight or the next night.

Yet, the exciting thing that Jesus does is He invites us into His presence, to come to the meal that He has prepared for us. He invites us to go to the cross with Him and see how He suffered and died — for us. In order to pay the price for our sins, Jesus suffered and died and we are witnesses of that great sacrifice and the beneficiaries of that death. Finally, Jesus invites us to the empty tomb and promises us life eternal with Him if we will accept and believe that He is the Christ, the true and only way to Salvation.

Christ coming in Bethlehem seems comfortable, Christ on Calvary seems frightening, Christ in the Garden seems mystifying and Christ coming to our house seems improbable and wonderfully fearful. Yet it is to save us that Jesus came in the flesh. The baby Jesus came in the flesh to die for us and He asks us to receive Him in our houses, in our hearts, in our whole being and life!

Jesus, please come to my place to stay!

A Bible Verse for your consideration: “Bless the Lord, who is my rock, He gives me strength for war and skill for battle. He is my loving ally and my fortress, my tower of safety, my deliverer. He stands before me as a shield, and I take refuge in him. He subdues the nations under me. (Psalm 144:1-2)

Prayer: Father, I came to You this morning, asking You in Jesus’ name to take me, just as I am. Please send Your Holy Spirit to guide me throughout this day. Oh Lord help me to be myself, striving to do better, and to look up forward in appreciation to You, Father, for all Your blessings around me. I ask Your help in honesty, to You, myself and others.

To admit my faults, I ask for forgiveness and Your mercy and accept Your great love. I ask You to help me read word, Lord Jesus and grant me grace to go by Your promises and facts, not feelings. Please help me today, Lord, to take the opportunities You give me to share the goodness You have given me with others.

I thank you for this day, Lord, for the time You’ve given me. Please help me to use it for Your honor and Your glory in Jesus’ name. Amen