Welcome to your morning coffee! May our Heavenly Father be gracious with us this Christmas season. He is so near to us. Why do we so often think that He is not? Father. You are close to us. Remind us. You are calling out to us to come closer to you in the midst of this very busy, very difficult season. Help us to hear you. May we see you, seek you, and rest in your presence Father. In the name of your son Jesus, please guide and direct our daily lives, and fill us with your Spirit. Amen.
Your Morning Song: "Yahweh" by Rend Collective
Your Morning Scripture: Matthew 1:1-16
1 This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah
the son of David, the son of Abraham:
2 Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
4 Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
6 and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,
7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asa,
8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,
Jehoram the father of Uzziah,
9 Uzziah the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amon,
Amon the father of Josiah,
11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah
and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
12 After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud,
Abihud the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
14 Azor the father of Zadok,
Zadok the father of Akim,
Akim the father of Elihud,
15 Elihud the father of Eleazar,
Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
16 and Jacob the father of Joseph,
the husband of Mary,
and Mary was the mother of Jesus
who is called the Messiah.
In yesterday's devotional we talked about our need, as commanded by God, to be still and acknowledge God for who He is with all of who we are. This is good and beautiful and true at all times, but so much more so during the Christmas season. It is easy, in December, to be be in constant motion, physical and emotional and financially. And in this season it is good to be still and know that God is God (and we are not).
But there is another reminder yet, as we are still, and looking to God, that is especially sweet during this Christmas season. And I highlighted some clues in Jesus's genealogy posted above, from Matthew's Gospel.
Perhaps some of you have had this conversation with me before about this text. But the genealogy of a person in the ancient world was very, very important. The person whose family line was being listed out would try to emphasize the most important names they could, so that their reputation would rest on the legacy of others.
But with Jesus's genealogy, something different is happening. There are women. And not just any women, but foreigners, and not just foreigners, but a prostitute! In the ancient world this would have been a shock. Women? Not even Jewish women, in the line of Christ? What is happening here?
These women, Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Mary, are listed here because they were faithful. And Jesus does not need the worldly reputation of great names to prop up His own. His is the greatest name, the name above every name. And so in Jesus's genealogy he chooses to include the names of these women who may not have been great in the kingdoms of earth, but in the Kingdom of Heaven? Their names have the greatest human legacy. Faithfulness.
This Christmas season, be still and know that God is God and that we are not. And that all that God desires from us is our faithfulness, not our perfection. Rest in prayer to Him. Rest in His Word. Rest in singing praise to Him. Rest in our Godly relationships with each other.
God's kingdom is about faithfulness, not performance. He is not interested in checked boxes and busyness and bitterness. He is interested in whether or not you are close to Him, faithful to Him, seeking Him.
This Christmas season, let's seek to be close to our Heavenly Father. And not forget all of our other cares and concerns. But instead present them to our Heavenly Father, and trust Him as we celebrate the birth of His Son Jesus.