By now those reading this blog should be noticing a theme. My mom is a BIG inspiration for me. Now I know we all have great Moms. I am sure yours is amazing. But without my mom I would not be the woman I am today. So when she calls me as I am in the car pulling out of the driveway for the gym and she says what are you doing right now? I turn the car off giving my full attention to speak with my mom. She called because she had this idea about an acrostic for the word wisdom. My mom is brilliant when she collaborates with God! It inspires, encourages and fuels my walk with the Lord. Therefore I am sharing it with all of you. This acrostic is collaboration between God, Mom and I. Hope it encourages and challenges you as well.
W-Wonder. Mary stated, “How can this be?” When the angel tells her she will conceive God’s child. Luke 1:26-33 recounts for us the discussion between Gabriel and Mary. Mary’s response is an example of how we should all respond to God’s anointing on us. It is not our place to comprehend God’s plan. Our place within His plan is simply God’s choice. We have not done anything to deserve the role we play in God’s will. The only option we have is to accept what God tells us. Verse 34 “how can this be Lord?” she answers with wonder. Mary marvels at the revelation. She contemplates how the revelation from Gabriel can come about but she never questions that it will happen. She never questions God’s power to accomplish what Gabriel foretold. Mary does not doubt her role or the favor of God that Gabriel told her she possessed. She simply accepts the revelation. Mary allows herself to accept this inconceivable plan. In the same manner we are asked to simply accept the unimaginable that God says in his word has been accomplished. God is capable. God is willing. God plans stand firm forever. (Psalm 33:11) Our responsibility is simply obedience.
I-Investigate. On the night of Jesus’ physical birth a host of Angels appear to shepherds tending their flocks in the fields nearby. Luke 1:8-20 recounts this event for us. The shepherds after hearing the news (verse 10) say to each other “let’s go and see what the angels proclaimed for ourselves” (verse 15). Do not miss the point! They did not just accept what was told to them without going for themselves to see the baby Jesus. You and I have heard the gospel before. We all know something about Jesus Christ. Someone in our lives consistently or at various points has spent their time been bending our ear about this man, Jesus, the proclaimed Messiah & Christ. But after we have been told about him each of us must make the decision to search out the truth for ourselves. Each of us will give account for our lives to Jesus Christ himself when we die (1 Peter 4:5 & Romans 14:10b-12). We alone are responsible for every action, thought and belief we held while on earth. No matter what you think you know about Jesus investigate your preconceived thoughts by join a Bible study, begin reading the Bible for yourself, spending time in prayer and asking mature Christians questions. God will reward you generously for your diligence in seeking him and the only man in human history who can change you, your life and your heart!
S-Search. In Matthew 2: 1-2 the three wise men are looking for Jesus the King of the Jews. They come to Jerusalem to King Harod expecting he would tell them where to find Jesus. The Magi travelled far from the east for some time seeking this new King of the Jews. The Magi exhibited intensity in their search for Christ. In the same manner we are called to seek out Jesus. We are asked of God after investigating for ourselves the truth to fervently seek out the man himself. Do you desire a personal relationship with Christ? Is there a longing deep within you that will only be fulfilled by the Savior? Scripture says in Revelation 3:20 Jesus is speaking “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.” Jesus is patiently waiting for you to search for him. He promises you will find him (Matthew 7:7 & John 14:13) and Jesus will remain with you if you accept him for who Scripture claims Jesus is.
D-Decide. We are to decide is what I saw and heard true. Now what do I do with the knowledge I have acquired for myself as well as meeting Jesus personally? Let us turn to the word of God for the answer. When King Harod heard that news that the Magi had come to worship this new king he was disturbed (Matthew 2:3). The following observations are taken from Matthew 2:7-12. Harod asks the wise men to tell him where Jesus is and sends them on their way to Bethlehem. The wise men arrive at the place Jesus is staying and worship him giving him rare and valuable gifts. Whereas King Harod waits to hear of Jesus’ location to kill him out of fear for his position and authority. Matthew 2:16-18 speak of the unimaginable pain that all of Israel felt when Harod in his furious rage over being outwitted by the wise men gives the order to kill every boy two years old and younger in Israel. We have a choice to make once we accept Jesus as who he claims to be. We can worship him giving our talents over to him in service as the wise men did. Or be like the shepherds and tell everyone we meet after coming face to face with Jesus about him, watching his kingdom grow without hesitation or hindrance (Luke 2:17-18). Lastly we can respond as Harod did. Angrily fighting against God exerting our own will and facing the consequence of our actions. Harod’s actions cost him his life. Personally I highly recommend avoiding the third option. That is just this simple girl’s advice.
O-Obey. The key to a successful existence is obedience in the Christian life as well as living in general. An example of this can be found in Matthew 2:13-15. Specifically verse 13 says, “Get up…take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Harod is going to search for the child to kill him.” Joseph has been warned with a direct message from God in a dream. Pay attention, it is Joseph’s choice how he responds to what he has been told. Verse 14 says Joseph obeyed God. He took Jesus and his mother and lived in Egypt until the death of Harod. We too experience warnings from God. Maybe not in a dream or an angel speaking to us, but God communicates. God wants us to have all the information we need to make a God glorifying choice. We too have the choice Joseph did. Obey what God says or ignore it. For you and I what God says is called the Bible. The Bible is the resource always available. What we need to survive this life is found within its pages. We cannot obey Christ if we do not know him. We get to know Christ reading his father’s word, and his very words for that matter. We cannot know Christ if we do not interact with him through the reading and studying of his word. That is just a fact. Reading and studying the word of God will produce maturity.
M-Mature in your Christianity; in the understanding you possess of God, Jesus, how to relate to other people and the purpose of life. Prayer is essential to maturity. We must spend time alone with God. This is more than asking God for a laundry list of wants and desires. Take Colossians 4:12 as an example. Paul speaks of Epaphras, who “…is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.” Our prayers are powerful. They unleash something in the spiritual that manifests in the physical world. Prayer time should also include thanking God, praising God and being still and quiet before God so that he can respond to you and the requests you make. Your prayers should become more intense as well as more specific as you mature in your relationship with Christ and knowledge of him. In Luke 8:9-18 Jesus is explaining to the disciples the meaning of the parable of the four soils. In verse 14 Jesus identifies what keeps those who hear the gospel from maturing in their faith. This is a warning that we should all heed. In this discussion be aware that the concerns of this world will fight to distract you from maturing in your faith and relationship with Christ. I Corinthians 4:13 & 15 discuss what maturity in Christ looks like. “Until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of God.” (13). Verse 15 talks of speaking in love and growing up into Christ who is our example. The take away should be that maturity comes through concentrated effort. Strong, faithful warriors for Christ are not that way by accident. They practice biblical wisdom. They wonder, investigate, search, decide, obey and mature in Christ. I pray as you have read this the Holy Spirit began to stir in your heart. I am sorry it took longer than usual to post. I wanted to be sure God was speaking through what is being presented. Have a blessed Thursday! I appreciate each of you. A big heart felt thank you from me to you!