Good morning, and welcome to His Encouragement Thursday! I don’t know about you, but Thursdays are my struggle day of the week. By Thursday, I have already been working hard at school and at home, and I just wish it would hurry up and be Friday already. LOL! I definitely need a little extra Jesus time on Thursdays.
Trisha, my blogger friend at Joy of Reading, and I decided on calling this post “His Encouragement” because our real source of peace, strength, and security can only come from Jesus Christ. He, and He alone, is our constant! We pray and hope that these Thursday posts become a real encouragement to you and help you end your week strong in God’s love and purpose for you. God bless!
Today’s Thursday Encouragement comes from:
Luke 2:8-20 (ESV)
And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” 15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
Merry early Christmas to you and your family!
I hope you have a blessed day!
I have always found Luke 2:8-20 to be a truly amazing passage — the angels, their message, the shepherds leaving their post to find Mary and Joseph and Jesus. I imagine the shepherds were in a bit of shock until they found Mary and Joseph. I imagine that when they looked upon the face of baby Jesus their hearts surely exploded with a love so fierce they couldn’t put it into words. I then imagine them hurriedly and excitedly retelling Mary and Joseph about their angelic visitation. It surely must have been a highly charged and emotional meeting!
What always jumps out at me though is verse 19: But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.
Here’s why this verse sticks out to me. There is a Bible teacher I go to often and he likes to play the game, “Where Have I Heard This Before?,” which is just his way of searching out the Bible to make connections. I want to play that game now with verse 19 from Luke 2. Where have I heard similar words like this before?
You can actually find a similar circumstance in Genesis 37. In this chapter, a very young Joseph has two dreams. He shares these dreams with his family who in turn become quite jealous of Joseph. I get it. It’s not cool to have your baby brother and youngest son tell you that one day he’s going to be in a higher position of power over you and you will bow down to him. If my youngest brother had said words like this to me, I would have probably punched him in the arm (good naturedly — as brothers and sisters do). But, the dreams are curious. And, coming to terms with them being sent from God definitely would make one stop and think. Which is exactly what Jacob does. Genesis 37:11 states: His brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the matter in mind. Jacob kept Joseph’s sayings in his mind to ponder them!
I haven’t found any other moments in the Bible where people keep things in their minds/hearts in order to ponder them. My Bible teacher would say that this means these two moments must be HUGELY significant. So, are they?
I think they are. Genesis 37 sort of mimics Luke 2. There is a supernatural visitation. Information is exchanged. That information is shared with a small group of people. And then a parent ponders the moment.
Perhaps these two moments in the Bible are significant because of the message they impart? In Genesis, Joseph is essentially shown by God through his dreams that one day he will rise to a position where he will then be able to save his people. Joseph is a foreshadow of Jesus. In Luke, the angels reveal that Yeshua (Jesus’s name means “Salvation”) has been born, a child who will one day be the Savior to His people. What I love so much is that the foreshadow in Genesis of a Savior is realized in Luke. Not only do Jacob and Mary ponder their children’s situations, but now we readers of the Bible must also ponder these moments.
For me, these moments bring a great peace. No matter WHEN God makes a promise, Genesis 37 and Luke 2 prove that God will ALWAYS honor His promise. What a FANTASTIC idea to ponder this holiday season.
NOW, IT’S YOUR TURN!
WHAT BIBLICAL VERSE IS ENCOURAGING YOU TODAY?
Check out more Thursday Encouragement from my fellow blogger friends:
Trisha @ Joy of Reading
Jacquelyn @ A Heavenly Home
Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective
Becca @ The Becca Files
Jenny @ Author Jenny Lynn
Gina @ Stories by Gina
Rebecca @ Rev. Rebecca Writes