Position Yourself for the Best Christmas

November 26, 2023

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We’ve now entered the final month of 2023, which is always a blessed time of the year. Celebrating the birth of our King and Savior, Jesus, brings me back to times of sweet fellowship with Him. I can’t help but think, where would I be without Him? Where would you be without Him? In the day and time we live in, the light, the hope, the peace, and the love that we enjoy is all due to Him. 

In recent days the Lord has been speaking to me concerning something that we must give diligence to…worship. In Luke 10 we find the familiar story of Jesus coming to the home of Mary and Martha. As you know, Martha was “cumbered about much serving,” so she came to Jesus and asked Him to make Mary get busy helping her instead of just sitting at His feet.

Jesus’ reply to Martha applies to us today as much as it ever has. He said, “Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful, and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:41-42)

There is so much we can glean from this story, but I want to bring out a couple of things for you to meditate on this holiday season. First of all, notice that Jesus said “one thing is needful.” So often when things get busy and when we have a list of things that need to be taken care of, only ONE thing is needed. You may be looking at your life right now and see numerous areas that need to be addressed, but here is the wonderful thing about God–He will only give you ONE thing to start. 

He’s never complicated when it comes to helping you along your way. He’s compassionate, full of mercy and love, and He makes working with Him simple. So often we take on the Martha mindset by encumbering ourselves with many things. We come up with multiple things we should do where the things of God are concerned, but that is not His way. He could have given a list to Martha of all the changes she needed to make, but He simplified it for her by giving her ONE directive. 

The second thing I want to point out is Mary’s position while Jesus was at her house. Luke 10:39 says, “And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word.” Recently, as I studied this story out and looked at it in other translations, here’s what I found. “Mary sat down” means, Mary sat near. In the Greek it says, Mary sat near Jesus. “At His feet” also means near. When you put this together, it’s saying, “Mary sat near near.” Mary wasn’t just near Jesus, she was as close to Him as she could possibly be. 

What a beautiful picture this gives us when it comes to worshiping the Lord in the midst of the busyness of a season, chaos in the world, and circumstances that you have no control over. Child of God, only one thing is needful for you. Get close. Pull in tight. Pull in near, and things will get fixed

Several years ago, there was a missionary from China who came to visit us in Birmingham. He and his wife had never been to our church until this particular mid-week service. After the service, I invited them to have dinner with me so we could spend some time fellowshipping with one another. During our conversation, I asked them to give me their honest feedback of being a part of one of our church services for the first time. I was really looking for criticism so we could improve, but they were actually very complimentary about many things. 

However, the thing that stood out to me the most is what they had to say about the worship segment. He mentioned another church in town that is very well known for their big worship productions, and they had been a part of some of their services before coming to visit us. He said that we got to a place of worship in 15 minutes that the other church tried to do in 45 minutes but never got to. 

Surprised by his response, I asked what he attributed that to. He replied, “it’s because your people have worship in them, and they came to worship.” I had never heard it like that before, but how accurate that statement is. We should always have worship in us, and it should be the easiest thing for us to do to worship the Lord

One time when preparing to minister, the Lord asked me this question, “How many times in the book of Revelation do you find the word worship?” I wasn’t sure the exact number, but based on the question I would guess probably many times. Then He asked, “How many times in the book of Revelation do you find the word praise?” Again, I wasn’t sure about the number of times it was in there, but I figured it wasn’t much. After looking into this, I found that the word worship or worshiped is found a total of 24 times, while the word praise, in any form, is found only once.  

Through these questions He showed me the difference between praise and worship. Praise is for the battlefield. We see this played out in 2 Chronicles 20 when Jehoshaphat and the children of Israel were faced with an impossible situation. Through praise, God led them straight to a miraculous victory. Worship, however, takes place in the presence of God, and when we worship, we go where He is. 
Let us remember to go where He is every single day and live our lives with worship in us. Take the time as you close out this year to get near near Him, just like Mary did. He is so worthy of your worship!

Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God, and this teaching will stir your faith! By feeding your faith, you position yourself to experience God’s best for your life!


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