Franklin Road Baptist Church
Saturday, March 06, 2021
“Christ is our Message….The Bible is Our Text”

Christmas Reflections

Reflection #3                

Talk About stress!                                                                                                                                                   The year 2020 has been extremely stressful for many of us. Have you ever thought how stressful it was for Mary and Joseph during the time around Jesus’ birth. 

First, they had to endure the public gossip about who the coming baby’s father was. (Matthew 1:18-20) Then there was the pregnancy itself. Stressful for any expectant mother-to-be, especially when it’s her firstborn. At the same time, they were required to travel from Nazareth to Bethlehem, a walking distance of about 90 miles, to register for the census in accordance with Caesars Augustus’ edict. Then they get there and there is no place to stay! But during the entire time they were blessed by the Lord (Luke 1:28, 30). 

Joseph was reassured by an angel sent from the Lord. The angel encouraged Joseph take Mary as his wife until she, a virgin, would give birth to a son, Jesus (Matthew 1:19-25). An angel came to Mary and told her of the blessing she had been called for – to give birth to the “Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:26-37). 

And what were Joseph’s and Mary’s responses?

They did as they were directed. In addition, Mary responded with “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word”, and a special prayer iterating the Lord’s greatness in all things (Luke 1:46-55). 

May we take lessons from Joseph and Mary by exalting the Lord for His greatness and faithfulness to us as we go through any stress or blessing. Praise be to God!

In His service,               Ben


Reflection #2

One of my favorite childhood memories of Christmas was curling up on the couch next to my dad and seeing the reflection of the Christmas tree lights in his glasses. I was comforted and secure with his arm around me and loved the way the lights sparkled on his glasses. It’s an image that has stayed with me for decades.
 
There are some who believe the lights on the Christmas tree represent the star over Bethlehem.    Others believe it symbolizes peace and hope. But perhaps the most recognized depiction is that the lights represent the light of Christ.

John 8:12 “When Jesus spoke again to the people, He said ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’”  As those who follow Christ, we can be comforted knowing we are secure in His arms eternally.
 
Remembering the reflection of the lights in Dad’s glasses, I can’t help but think about Christ as light. Are we reflecting that light to others? Do we tell others of the hope and peace that comes only from Christ? What a challenge for us in a world that seems dark. Be the light that reflects Christ!
 
Submitted by: Diana


Reflection #1

In my Bible study time I have been working on an acrostic of the words Immanuel (God with us), using other names or descriptive words for Jesus Christ.  The Lord has wonderfully blessed me these last few weeks as I have meditated on this phrase, especially knowing that He was with my mom in her hospital room during her suffering with Covid-19 prior to her going home to heaven, when my sister and I could not be there with her.  In many of the lines I have included both an Old Testament and a New Testament scripture reference.  All references are from the New American Standard Bible, unless otherwise indicated.

IMMANUEL (GOD WITH US)                         - Isaiah 7:14 and Matthew 1:23

I—I AM WHO I AM (Exodus 3:14 and John 8:58)

M—Messiah (Daniel 9:25 and John 1:41)

M—Morning Star (Revelation 22:16)

A—Alpha and Omega (Isaiah 41:4 and Revelation 1:8)

N—Nazarene (Matthew 2:23)

U—Unique (Job 23:13)

E—Eternal (Isaiah 9:6 and 1st Timothy 1:17)

L—Lamb of God (Isaiah 53:7 and Revelation 5:12)

G—Good Shepherd ( Psalm 23:1 and John 10:11)

O—Only begotten Son of God (John 3:18)

D—Deliverer (Psalm 18:2 and Romans 11:26)

W—Word of God (John 1:1)

I—Image of the Invisible God (Colossians 1:15)

T—Teacher (John 13:13)

H—Healer (Isaiah 53:5 and Matthew 8:16)

U—Unchangeable (Job 23:13, English Standard Version)

S—Savior of the World—Isaiah 45:21-22 and John 4:42)

Submitted by Laura….