Friday, December 14, 2012
Today’s Topic: The Perfect Gift at the Perfect Time
Today’s Text: Psalm 119:97 (ESV) Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day.
You may be wondering where I have been. At least I hope you have been wondering that. It would kinda hurt if these blog posts were absent for a week and no one noticed. It has been excruciatingly busy this week. First the snow storm shut everything down on Monday, then early morning make-up appointments (don’t laugh – a guy has to look good you know), plus medical emergencies (not mine), planning meetings for church ministries as we project into the new year and occupancy of our new building, staff reviews and budgets to get done, and of course waiting anxiously for the end of the world…WHEW! I will be so glad when this week is over.
When busyness hits like this, my spirit is susceptible to faithless thinking. The specific area of the enemy’s attack on me concerns finances – primarily in regards to the new church construction. Oh the building is going to go up and the contractor is going to be paid, but as a church we took a HUGE step of faith to volunteer our time and resources to complete the facility at an extra cost of $160,000 that we currently don’t have. That can be scary when viewed through the lens of human capability. When I am tired I tend to look through that lens.
On the way to the office this morning I was again challenged by the words of Ron Hutchcraft. I share this with you, not because I’m still so busy and don’t have time to write any more, but because it’s exactly what I needed for today and believe it will meet a need you have as well.
Well, it’s got to be the Christmas season! I keep seeing the UPS trucks going up and down our street like a fleet, and those drivers are busy! They must collapse into bed at night after those long, long hours they work. But their job could be worse. What if they had to shop for all those packages, and buy them, and package them and deliver them? Well, fortunately it’s not up to the UPS man to create the package; he’s just got to deliver it. It’s kind of like you and me.
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Luke 1 . I’m going to begin reading at verse 31, where Mary is being given Mission Impossible. Oh, it’s long before the TV program or the movies ever came along, but she’s got mission impossible. Listen to this as the angel comes to her, “You will be with child and give birth to a son. You are to give Him the name Jesus.”
This is the virgin named Mary. “You will give birth to a son. You will be with child.” Well, her question is reasonable. “‘How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’ The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.'” Mary looks around and what God is asking her to do, it just can’t happen based on any human ability or anything human experience would support.
Is there something big in your life like that right now? You say, “Man, this one is so tough, so big, so beyond me, I just honestly can’t see any way by any human plan or any human ability that this could ever happen. This mountain cannot move.” Well, Mary was there. If you’re there, stay tuned.
God’s answer to impossible situations is the same 2,000 years later. Mary’s question may be your question, “How will…” God’s answer, “He will.” “How will it be?” “The Holy Spirit will” is His answer. You don’t have to be the answer. You don’t have to create the answer. You don’t have to think up the answer. You’re the UPS man; you just deliver the answer. You just deliver the package. You and I are his instruments. The instrument doesn’t play its own music; someone plays through the instrument. The answer doesn’t come from you any more than the packages come from the UPS man. They come through you.
The solution is God’s intervention, not man’s invention. As long as you try to face this challenge with human calculation you’re going to be overwhelmed. But Mary found something better than being overwhelmed; it’s overshadowed. The passage says, “You’ll be overshadowed by the power of the Holy Spirit.” You want to be overwhelmed? Well, you will be if you focus on your ability. Or you can be overshadowed by God’s power.
When you realize that you only deliver God’s packages, you develop two vital mindsets. First, you develop humility; you know that all the credit goes to the giver, not to the deliverer. We don’t hug and kiss the UPS man when he comes and say, “Oh, thank you for this wonderful gift!” He didn’t give it, he just delivered it. So you know that you have every reason for humility.
Secondly, it gives you confidence. I can row into this storm right now because God’s power will be the difference, not mine. So, relax. Even if you’re in the middle of mission impossible right now, God is getting the solution ready. All you have to do is be available to deliver someone else’s package.