New Beginnings

This week we’re finishing up 2020 and the “Let us Adore Him” sermon series.

A few years ago, an insurance company released a series of funny commercials with the theme “life comes at you fast.” The gist was that because unexpected things can happen quickly, you need insurance. I will not speak to the pros and cons of various insurance products, but I wholly endorse the idea that life indeed comes at you fast. Want a quick personal example? On a shelf near me at this moment sits one of my favorite stuffed animals from when I was a kid. His name is “Ert” and he still looks and smells exactly like I remember. Near him is my daughter’s high school senior picture.
Life does come at you fast.

We spend a lot of time at Christmas talking about Jesus’ birth; and in a few short months at Easter, we’ll talk a lot about His death and resurrection. The rest of the year we mostly think about Jesus’ three-year ministry at the end of His life on earth and how His teachings influence the way we should live and treat each other.

We talk very little about what Jesus was doing in the “in-between” time between His birth and His ministry. We just don’t know much about it. Luke chapter two starts with His birth, and by chapter three He’s thirty and launching His ministry. What happened in between? Was Jesus like other boys, good-naturedly shoving His buddies around in the hall before class, or inexplicably trying to jump and touch the top of every doorway? We don’t get much detail:

And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and with people. (Luke 2:52 HCSB)

During this “in-between” time Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, where stature isn’t simply physical presence, but also influence. Our lives as Christians are marked by our spiritual birth and then by our physical death. In between, we should demonstrate our adoration of Jesus by following His example, to grow our own wisdom and stature.

This Christmas I hope you spent time adoring Jesus. As we enter 2021, how can we continue to demonstrate what that means?

By Mark Stuart

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