|Posted by Lorraine Serra on December 24, 2014 at 1:15 PM|
“Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts." Heb 3:8
"See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness." Heb 3:12-13
There are at least 22 times in scripture where God warns us about having a hard heart towards Him. That word can be interpreted as stubborn, unbelieving or disinterested or defiant.
Now, in marketing strategies, or political campaigns, a general rule is get your message out there at least 7 or 8 times to create name recognition, or product recognition. In other words, get your point across! Establish your brand.
God has not only displayed His majesty and creative power in the very world of nature we see daily, but has warned us in scripture time and time again. There is an important message here about the destructive nature of a hard heart.
No doubt, people are hardened or made cynical or suspicious by terrible circumstances in life. And that is understandable. But, remaining stuck in that place can make for a most unhappy life. A life branded by these attitudes is often thwarted by negative thinking and hopelessness or apathy. That can be a tough nut to crack. It takes a whole lot of love to rebuild trust and unleash a wave of hope in that life.
Perhaps, in God's great wisdom, His marketing strategy, if you will, was to touch hard hearts with a helpless baby in a barn. It is quite a message: The Creator became flesh and lived among us. A leader who got into the trenches with us. A Servant King. A King who laid down His life for all of us, and took the pain and destructive outcomes of a heart distant from God upon Himself so we could be set free. Forgiven, free, promised to eternal relationship with God. What a brand!
Who doesn't need a fresh start? God wants for all of His children to know the intimate love and abundant life of forgiveness and a fresh do-over every day, through His son, Jesus Christ. Don't let a hard heart remain stubborn, or disinterested or defiant and miss out!
"Today is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!" Psalm 118:24
This ancient text is still true today. Every day is a gift. And the gift, powered by the marvelous grace and direction of Almighty God, will multiply into a lifetime of purpose, because HE HAS ACCOMPLISHED this for us! God's Word and His gift of Messiah, Jesus Christ, is not only divine and eternal, it is extremely practical for daily life.
Today, I praise Him for His love, provision, guidance, forgiveness and strength. Today, I pray for peace, love, comfort and unending joy for you and for me. And I know we will receive all we need, just as He promised, when we welcome Jesus into our hearts.....TODAY!
Glory to God in the highest, indeed. Merry Christmas!
Categories: ADVENT 2014