Sunday, December 4, 2011

ADVENT Dec. 17

Read I Samuel 1:1-28  Key verse: "I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of Him.  So now I give him to the LORD" (vss. 27,28)

How can this be?

 Mary gave no thought to having a child.  Why should she?  She was a virgin.  Yet God wanted to implant in her the Light of Life.   God's plan was to give her this Life that the world might have everlasting life.   Hannah wanted nothing more than to have a child but she was barren.   Her earnest prayer for a child was answered and she was so grateful that she pledged that child to the LORD.  The child named Samuel became a great prophet, priest, and the one who anointed Israel's first king.  Mary's child became the great Prophet, Priest, and KingNo wonder Mary asked, 
" How can this be?

God is the great life-giver.  You may have a major disappointment in your life that no amount of prayer seems to help.  Hannah wanted a child more than anything else on earth.  She would go to Shiloh every year to worship the LORD and beg Him for a child.  She never gave up!  Finally she conceived and had a child.  Yuo can be sure that God's plan for you includes life.  He wants to energize you with His life, power and love.  It may not come in the exact form you would like but it will come.  

I am in a group that is studying the prayer of Jabez(I Chron. 4:9,10).  He prayed, "Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my territory and that Your hand would be with me."  Sometimes we do not know exactly what blessings God has for us but He does have them for us.   He wants to expand our territory by using us to bring His life into dead and barren places.   If we truly want His hand to be with us and we ask for it, we will have it.  The asking is important.   Prayer can really change things.  The LORD is continually placing opportunities in our lives to bring life to others.  Christmas is a great time to live out and speak out the truth of God's love in Christ. 

When Hannah's prayer was answered she remembered her promise and gave Samuel back to the LORD.   All our blessings are from Him and should be dedicated to Him.  It is in giving back to God what He has given us that life comes forth to make a difference in the world.  

A good way to live is to ask God and then to give to God.    It is just one of the great and amazing ways God works.

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