walk in the word
18And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, at it had been told them. —Luke 2:18-20
A few weeks ago after the service was over, I met a lady who told me something I’ve been thinking about ever since. She waited patiently until I had a moment to talk. After briefly introducing herself, she said, “Pastor James, when I came to Harvest, I knew the Lord, but I didn’t love the Lord. Not like the people I met at Harvest.” And she began to weep and said, “Now I love the Lord.”
I hope you’ve made that cross-over. This Christmas, I pray that you know you’ve made that cross-over from basic knowing to deeply loving the Lord Jesus Christ. Everyone has to go across that bridge from not knowing—the first bridge—to knowing about the Lord. But don’t stop there. Go from knowing about the Lord to knowing the Lord until you reach that place where you are loving the Lord. Do you know what I’m talking about? The treasuring up in your heart how awesome He really is. Everyone has to make that transition. And a big part of that is understanding who He really is.
Let me just ask you: Have you made that transition from knowing about the Lord to loving the Lord? Christmas is an opportunity to treasure. One of the participants in those amazing events had the kind of response we’re aiming for. Mary “treasured” and “pondered” all the ways God had moved in her life. The sense in this text isn’t that the shepherds did one thing (“glorifying and praising God”) while Mary did something completely different. She simply went beyond the immediate response of giving glory to God and let the whole experience settle down into her heart and mind until it became like a background tune that could never be forgotten. She sang glory at Christmas and then treasured Christmas for the rest of her days. I want so much for everyone to make that transition.
Treasuring means making Jesus part of the fabric of your life. You think of Him throughout the day. It’s more than an emotional attachment; it’s a growing understanding that all that Jesus is. And then it’s responding more and more to Jesus as His love becomes more and more apparent to you.
Prayer: Father, I know that life boils down to loving You with my whole heart, my whole soul, my whole mind, and my whole strength. I don’t want to neglect any of those ways. I long for there to be substance and experience behind my words when I say “I love You.” Thank You that as I grow into this love I am constantly reminded that You already love me as much as You will ever love me, which is more than I can imagine! Pondering that makes me want to say, “I love You too, Lord, as well as I can. Help me love You more!” In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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