Day 5: Peace in Knowing

Scripture: Luke 1:26-33

“26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” 29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

“Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God.” Can you imagine being Mary at that moment? First, she was terrified by the overwhelming bright light and power of an angel that had served in the very presence of the Highest and then found out that she was favored by God. To be favored is to know that a person likes what you have done and that you have their support. Mary had lived the kind of life that brought a smile to God’s face. God saw that she was honoring Him by showing kindness and respect to others. She would have made the kind of choices that God supported, so God chose her for the very special job of being Jesus’s mother.

Choices matter. Habits matter. Kindness matters. When we show ourselves to be wise, in the small actions, habits and choices of our daily lives, it brings a smile to God’s face and He blesses us and gives us even more amazing ways to serve him. God chose Mary to do great things and he has chosen you as well.  Because God loves you and has chosen you, you can also have peace in knowing that He will never leave you or give up on you.

Allow yourself to dream for just a moment. People often ask us what we want to be when we grow up, but let’s flip that for just a moment and ask ourselves “How does God want me to serve when I grow up?” Think about the things that you get excited about and that you do well; these are called your passions. One day if we, like Mary, continue to follow in God’s ways and bring a smile to his face, then we might just find ourselves in that spot of service where our passions are used to bring glory to God and help to others.

You are chosen, you are loved and you can serve God in great ways. Just allow God to show you the next wise choice with your money, and your relationships with God. When we make poor choices with our money, it can limit the ways that we might be used by God and it will limit our peace because financial problems lead to worry. Likewise, choosing to honor ourselves above God, will also keep us from finding that place where our great passion and the world’s great needs meet in service to God.

Prayer:  God of Goodness, who smiles upon us; let us live lives in preparation for service to you through Godly choices and habits everyday. Give us peace in knowing that you are with us now and always. Amen

Activity:  Talk as a family about what your passions and gifts are. Ask yourselves how God might use them to serve Him.  Discuss how you can support each other as you seek to serve God as a family?

Challenge:  Parents, it is important that our kids feel supported as they seek to serve Christ.  Your challenge this week is to help your children think of short-term service goals.  Maybe it is saving money to give to Christmas missions or a local charity; or maybe it’s an act of loving service. Help them to keep these goals in focus and hold them accountable for their choices with their time and money.