Advent Devotional 12/23: Rejoice to Victory
Christmas Sunday 2019 at Kardia was an absolute blast. The music was wonderful, including an original song. We had record-breaking attendance according to my knowledge. The fellowship meal was so fun. All in all, it was evident to me that God was doing a new thing in our church, and this is just the beginning. It felt like God gave us this experience on Christmas Sunday as a deposit of what he will do for 2020. It was a foretaste of how he will elevate the ministries of Kardia and allow us to bless and reach more people for Jesus.
I am reminded of a passage in Isaiah:
“Do I bring to the moment of birth and not give delivery?” says the Lord. “Do I close up the womb when I bring to delivery?” says your God. “Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice greatly with her, all you who mourn over her.” (Isaiah 66:9–10, NIV)
When God conceives a vision for his people, he will make sure to bring it to fruition. And he tells the people to rejoice and be glad, to change our mourning into rejoicing.
It is important to celebrate every good work of God. It is by constantly acknowledging what God is doing that we will continue to have faith to see the work to completion.
Of course there will be challenges ahead. But it is one thing to be realistic about those challenges and another thing to be fixated on them to the point that we are unable to rejoice in the victories.
I want to challenge Kardia to rejoice our way to victory. I want to encourage us to celebrate every good thing we experience from God along this journey. I want us to remember this Christmas Sunday, to remember what God can do when we offer our faith and our very best work for his purposes, and to think about how we can continue to keep the ball rolling every week.
It takes work and it is a struggle to get a large object moving. But God has created a powerful thing called momentum. Once you get it moving, it is much easier to keep it going. That’s what rejoicing does, it keeps the ball rolling until we get to where we’re going.
So we rejoice today as God has begun a good work at Kardia. And we will rejoice our way to the end. Next Christmas, I anticipate that Kardia will have grown in all kinds of amazing ways. I can see the end from the beginning, because we have a God who is faithful. Whatever he conceives, he will deliver.
God, we celebrate you and your Son, Jesus Christ, today, because you have done great things! We thank you for every single person who came to worship on Christmas Sunday. May you bless them, fill their hearts with your joy, and provoke them to continue to seek your face and growth in faith.
We acknowledge that you are with us. You have given us a vision to be an even greater blessing to the world. We believe and have confidence that you will bring that vision to reality in 2020. But in this moment as we approach Christmas, we are simply grateful and joyful. Thank you for loving us. Thank you for choosing us. Thank you for being with us forever through Jesus Christ.
In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.