Songs of the Season: Luke 2:6-7

“And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

As we have been working through our Advent teaching series, God with Us, last week we talked about the incredible glory and power that belongs to Jesus as the eternally pre-existent second member of the Trinity. He is fully God, and we dare not forget that. And yet, at the same time (and as we will talk about this coming Sunday, available here on Monday), He voluntarily took on all the limitations of humanity. All of them. Not only that, when He actually entered the world, it was not among the halls of the great and powerful where He would be afforded the honor rightly due His station. Instead, it was through the womb of a poor, teenage mother who was giving birth on a cave floor with no one but an anxious father and a collection of smelly animals as her company. What could motivate the God of all creation to enter the world in such mean estates? One word: love.

That brings us to today’s song of the season. A Christmas album I keep going back to again and again each year is Meredith Andrews’ album, “Receive Our King.” Every year as I listen to it from start to finish over and over again, the rich theology and superb storytelling woven into some truly spectacular music leaves me looking forward to the next year’s excuse to listen again. If this were an old cassette tape, I would have likely long since worn it out.

Toward the end of the album is a song borrowed from another tremendous artist, Andrew Peterson, that starts out with an unassuming guitar line and Andrews’ declaration that the night of Jesus’ birth was not the silent night the traditional carol so beautifully but, in all likelihood, so inaccurately proclaims. The King of Heaven entered the world not with pomp, but with pain and a mess and the utmost of humility. I have yet to find a song that captures that night and the love that made it possible quite so well as “Labor of Love.” As you continue to celebrate through this Advent season, I hope and pray this is the blessing for you it has so often been for me.

Songs of the Season: Christmas Eve Edition

“The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant from the Holy Spirit.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

When Matthew offers up his version of the story of Jesus’ birth, he starts it like this: “The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way.” Now, if you didn’t know the story from there, but you had some rough idea of who Jesus was, you might expect the tale to be one of great action and glory. You might expect it to be a story of power and might. God was breaking into the world. Surely He did it in the most dramatic and impressive way He possibly could have done it so no one would be able to miss it. After all, shouldn’t the creator of the universe enter into His creation with all the pomp and circumstance He was due? 

Read the rest…

Big News

This week we took a look at the story of the announcement of Jesus’ birth through the eyes of someone who experienced it first hand. Just what can we learn from Mary’s reaction to the news of God’s plans for her? Keep reading to find out.

Big News

In a season when busyness seems to be the name of the game, sometimes it’s hard to remember just what exactly it is we are supposed to be celebrating at this time of year.  Many of us know the story of Christmas well enough, but when we’re running to and fro trying to get everything done on time, we don’t stop to give it much thought.  As we continue in this season of Advent, of waiting and preparing for the coming of Christ, we want to help you remember just what exactly all the hype is all about.  We’d like to help you see the Christmas story through the eyes of some of the folks who experienced it firsthand.  This morning we’re going to hear from someone who had a bit…higher…perspective on the whole affair than most of its participants had.  So, sit back, relax, and enjoy our guest, but make sure you listen closely all the way to the end—he’s got something to share you won’t want to miss.

Read the rest…