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FOURTH SUNDAY IN ADVENT

This is the day the LORD hath made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Isaiah 7:10-17
Romans 1:1-7
Matthew 1:18-25
Psalm 24

Poor Joseph. The angel asks him to break all the rules, to accept the unacceptable, to forgive the unthinkable. Few of us are prepared to walk down a path like this. Especially in troublling times, we seek security in doing what we always have done. We think that if . . .

FOURTH SUNDAY IN ADVENT

This is the day the LORD hath made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Isaiah 7:10-17
Romans 1:1-7
Matthew 1:18-25
Psalm 24

Poor Joseph. The angel asks him to break all the rules, to accept the unacceptable, to forgive the unthinkable. Few of us are prepared to walk down a path like this. Especially in troublling times, we seek security in doing what we always have done. We think that if we stick to what is familiar, eventually we will find release from our worries.

God is not asking Joseph or us to do anything that God is not already risking. The child to be born of the virgin Mary will be called Emmanuel, "God is with us." Before long we will indeed see God where we most often see ourselves: God will be hanging on the cross, enduring every form of alienation and suffering that becomes our lot in life.

The Advent promises are about to be fulfilled. The babe to be born in bethlehem's manger will bring us life and light and healing. The angels will sing of it. The shepherds and magi will worship this mystery, the promises of God fulfilled in a tiny child who will one day suffer and die so we can live.

This child cannot come to us quickly enough. Our lives groan for the new birth God alone can promise and bestow. Tomorrow evening it will happen. Jesus will be placed in a bed of staw, he will be placed into our hands. The promises of God are fulfilled as they are enfleshed among us. "Even so, LORD Jesus, quickly come."

Christian friends, Throughout the rest of our lives and into eternity, let's magnify that wonderful name-- Jesus.

JESUS, JESUS, JESUS.
Let all heaven and earth proclaim:
Kings and kingdoms will all pass away,
But there's something in and about that name!

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY - The name of Jesus is precious to those who know Him and profane to those who spurn Him. 

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