Making Church Matter

Loving Christmas and Expecting Miracles III

December 8, 2012

Ever since we started the miracle series, people have been stopping me, and seeking me out and e-mailing me (a minor miracle in itself, since I am somewhat inaccessible via e-mail).

And they’re telling me about miracles…miracles they’re seeing or experiencing just because they’re on the look out for them this season. Apparently there are lots of miracles out there, if we’re on the lookout expecting them.

This has given us an idea.

What if we collected together all the miracles people are on the look out for this Christmas?  This weekend we’re distributing “miracle cards.”  The cards aren’t a miracle, they’re just a place to record the miracle you’re expecting and receiving this Christmas. We’re going to encourage everyone to fill out a card and return it to us.  Those on our internet campus will be able to do it electronically. We will be collecting completed cards and our staff and our prayer team will be praying over them between now and Christmas (we’re also eventually going to be doing something quite cool with them, but can’t tell you about that now).

In the meanwhile, this weekend we’re talking about what we do while we’re expecting a miracle. John the Baptist said it best (though actually he was quoting Isaiah)

“Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.”

Luke 3.4

Isaiah 40.3

John tells us to prepare the way for God to act, do something to prepare for God to do something.

Prepare the way by making straight the path…getting obstacles out of his way…and the obstacles are just what you’d expect:

Dishonesty and deceit; injustice, intolerance, ingratitude; bitterness, anger, envy or pride; gossip, lying, lust, laziness, basically anything that dishonors God in my life.

Preparing the way for a miracle means taking action and removing those things that get in the way.

  • You can’t expect God to act and do a wonderful thing in your finances if you are still digging a deeper hole of debt.
  • You can’t expect God to work a miracle in your family if you gossip about the other family members.
  • You can’t expect God to heal your marriage if you keep putting down your spouse in front of others.

In whatever area this Christmas you want a miracle, you need to prepare the way for God to act by removing that which dishonors him…at least to get started in that direction.

The obstacle you remove, doesn’t have to be big. It could be very small. It may even in some ways be symbolic. Prepare the way.

  • Maybe you need to make a phone call and apologize.
  • Maybe you need to spend less time on stupid, inappropriate stuff on the Internet.
  • Maybe you have been overly critical of the people in your life and you need to lighten up.

You want to see a miracle this Christmas, prepare the way. Prepare the way for a miracle. You do what you can…and then look what happens:

Every valley shall be filled,

and every mountain and hill shall be brought low,

and the crooked shall be made straight,

and the rough ways be made smooth.

Luke 3.5-6

Isaiah 40.4

PS

I started tweeting a number of weeks ago, but have been surprised how slow it has been to build a following.  I know that as a loyal blog reader (thank you, thank you) you can see the twitter feed here. Still, if you’re on Twitter, it would be a big help to me if you would consider following me: Michael White @nativitypastor.

Thanks

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  1. Funny to read your comments about followers on Twitter after seeing your tweet last night with the comments from the Editor of Loyola “I cannot believe the traffic we’re seeing for your story!”
    They’ll come, Father, as the word spreads and the book is released, they’ll come. Imagine next year at this time – 10,000 followers? More? Just keep doing what you’re doing and praying… and start thinking about and praying about and discussing the SECOND book!

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