The Voice of the Shepherd
"For nothing is impossible with God.” Luke 1:37
Mary asked the angel how it could be that she was pregnant since she was a virgin. His simple reply was, "For nothing is impossible with God.”
Those words are something each one of us should take to heart. We may be surrounded by difficult, challenging, and seemingly impossible situations -whether it be with our health (mental or physical), our wealth, our marriage, our children, our workplace, our school, or our country. Let the words of the angel bring you encouragement today -For nothing is impossible with God. Do you believe this?
Consider this: God created the heavens and the earth, the sun, the moon and the stars all in six days. It was our God who parted the Red sea and lead His people through the sea on dry ground. Our God fed the people of Israel “bread from heaven” for 40 years in the wilderness. It was God who broke down the great walls of Jericho so that His people might enter the promised land. It was by the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit that Jesus was conceived and born of the virgin Mary. By the power of God, Jesus when he grew up, opened the eyes of the blind, turned the water into wine, healed the sick, multiplied the fish and the loaves, walked on water, cast out demons, and even raised the dead back to life again. Jesus Himself triumphed over sin death and the power of the devil.
By prayer, invite Jesus into your “impossible” wherever and whatever it may be. The bible says that God is able “to do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine.” Do you believe this? The father of a demon possessed boy came to Jesus and asked “if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.” ‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.”(Mark 9:22-23)Do you believe this?
James the Apostle, chides the believers for their unwillingness to invite God into all their troubles and problems. He wrote, "You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures."(James 4:2-3)I read an author who said, “God answered every prayer I prayed, either He gave me what I asked for or what I should have asked for.
”This Christmas don’t be discouraged and disheartened by the trials and tribulations you may be experiencing, God may be bringing you to a seemingly impossible situation that you might call upon His Name and see the glory of God. As the Apostle Paul instructs us, "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."(Romans 12:12)
May God Bless you this Christmas,
The Voice of the Shepherd
Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim His greatness. Let the whole world know what He has done. Sing to Him; yes, sing His praises. Tell everyone about His wonderful deeds. Psalm 105:1-2
Dr. George W. Truett, an American clergyman, in the early twentieth century, accepted an invitation from a church to preach the dedication sermon for their new building. He arrived at the church about ten minutes before the service started, and was told that the church needed to raise $6,500 by the next day in order to finish paying for the building. The church officers told him that they were depending on him to raise the money. Dr. Truett preached the sermon then said, “These men bid me to tell you that you must give $6,500 in cash, which is all due tomorrow. Will you provide it?”
After Dr. Truett’s appeal, began the slowest, most reluctant, most Christ-shaming offering he had ever witnessed. After thirty minutes they had $3,000—not even half of what they needed. Dr. Truett said, “What do you expect of me? I am your guest. I do not happen to have the other $3,500. What do you expect of me?
”A little woman rose and addressed her husband who was at the front of the church recording what was given. With pathos in her voice she said, “Charlie, I have wondered if you would be willing for us to give our little cottage just paid out of debt. We were offered $3,500 in cash for it yesterday. We were told we could get it at the bank any time in ten days, if we chose to make the trade. “Charlie, I have wondered if you would be willing for us to give our little house to Christ, that His house may be free. When we remember, Charlie, that Christ gave His life for us, I wonder if we ought not to give this little house to Him.
”Charlie responded in the same spirit, “Jennie, dear, I was thinking of the same thing. We will give $3,500.”
Silence reigned for a minute and then grown men began sobbing, and almost in a moment that $3,500 was given by men and women who for the last half hour had either refused to give or had given grudgingly. Many visitors had come for the special service, and before an invitation was given men and women came down every aisle in the church wanting to be saved. The gratefulness of that one couple for what the Lord had done for them and their desire to give to Him prompted others to give and many to be saved.
As a Christian, you need to hear this: You belong to God, Christ has purchased you and your salvation is based on His gracious gift. You didn't deserve it and you can't earn it. It was a free gift. Once you start to realize what God has done for you, you will give freely, naturally, and joyfully, as an expression of thanksgiving.
It takes time to teach our children to say “thanks.” Researchers say it is considerably easier to teach children to say good-bye than to teach them to say “thank you.” As adult followers of Christ, we do not have to look very far before we recognize that we too, are sometimes slow to learn to say, 'Thank you" to the wonderful gifts we have been given by our heavenly Father.
Here are three ways we can give thanks to God;
- We give thanks to God is in our worship. God delights when we come to His house and gather together as His family. The psalmist said, I will praise God’s name in song and glorify Him with thanksgiving. God delights to hear His children sing to Him and thank Him for what He has done for us -just as we delight when our children give thanks to us.
- We thank God because He is the one who gives us our daily bread, life,and health. The Bible says “every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of Heavenly lights. ”All we have is a gift from God, we tend to forget that and believe we have earned what we have. Our offerings remind us that God is the provider and He is the One who has so richly blessed us.
- We give thanks to God in our communion. The Apostle Paul calls the wine, of the communion service, the “cup of thanksgiving.” As we participate we are giving thanks to the one who saved us and has given us new life. Make time to attend the thanksgiving meal offered each month at the altar. It is a gathering of the family of God, and when you are not there you are missed, and you miss an opportunity to “draw near to God.”
- We cause thanksgiving to overflow to God when we help others in their time of need. As we give our gifts and do our acts of service in the name of Jesus, thanksgiving to God overflows from the hearts of those who are blessed. As we collect food for the food bank, pack shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child, or give special offerings to further the work of the kingdom of God, we seethe truth, “it is more blessed to give than to receive.” Consider how God has blessed you and give your gifts that others might also be blessed.
Have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving,
updated December 2021