Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Holy Christmas

"For he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his  name"  (Luke 1:49, ESV).

Holy is His name! Holy is the name of the Most High and Mighty God! In her hymn found in Luke 1:46-55, Mary sang of the holiness of God. She had a right perspective on it all. It wasn't about her, it was about the God of the universe. It was about a mighty God who was holy!

To be holy is to be set apart, to be pure, to be without blemish. God is the only one who is holy. He is the only Messiah. He is the only one worthy. God sent Jesus, His Son, to earth to show us how to live and how to die. Jesus is God in flesh - fully human, and yet still God. Jesus was holy. Our minds cannot conceive of what it means to be without sin, but Jesus was without sin. Mary understood enough to know that she was carrying the Messiah of the world. She understood that God was holy and that He had done a mighty work in her both physically and spiritually. She rejoiced in His holiness and in His mighty hand in her life. No doubt she understood that she was not worthy, yet He was.

We live in a world that is full of sin. In fact, we tend to look the other way or just ignore some things in our lives. Sometimes during the holidays, we forget that we must be holy before God. When we are not holy (and have unconfessed sin), we tend to let things get to us. People and even family members bother us. Somehow we get so busy that we forget to sit before the Lord and confess our sins one by one.  One thing leads to another and we find ourselves stressed and losing perspective on the little things.

I was blessed to be in two small gatherings to pray for my friend Lisa. Lisa lost an eye to cancer 20 years ago. The cancer has returned in the other eye and we prayed over her today. Her surgery is December 23. Praying for her healing has brought a new perspective to the season for me. The things that seemed big are now small. My personal sin seems so huge as I have close times with the Lord. I am so aware of my shortcomings and I am committed to keep my eyes on the log in my own eye and not on the specks I see in others. I'm sure I will fall back but I'm going to keep pursuing holiness. I'm going to keep confessing my sin and keep my eyes on what is important - that Jesus came into the world to save us.

Mary had many things happening - she was pregnant, the baby wasn't from Joseph, her friends and family must have wondered about it all, and she was staying with a relative - but she praised God that He was mighty and holy. She knew that He was in control and to keep her focus on His holiness - not on her worthiness.

This Christmas, will you join me? Will you confess your sins before the Lord? Will you concentrate on the Lord and His mighty hand in your life. He chose your family and placed you there. He knows, cares, and is working. Let's fall before Him and "be holy because He is holy."

Have a "Mary" Christmas!