Thursday, April 5, 2012

Lent Day 38 - The Plan

"Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel." Isaiah 7:14

" angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, 'Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." Matthew 1:20-21

"While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn...
the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today, in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord."  Luke 2:6-7, 9-11

What an amazing plan. We live life at breakneck speed, always wanting to hurry things up. Do more in less time. God has patiently been working out his plan through centuries of time since the fall. He has watched the world as a whole as we have become too sophisticated for him, relying on science and our own cleverness to get us ahead. We map the human genome and think that we are just a breath away from unraveling the secret of life. One day we will be so clever and so smart that we will no longer need a god to worship nor religion to lean on. 

God's plan is so simple. A debt incurred by one and paid in full by another. 

We are too arrogant for such a simple plan.  It doesn't make sense and because we can't reason it out we reject it. Religion is for the weak and simple-minded. Right? What does scripture say...

"But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; 
God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things - 
and the things that are not - to nullify the things that are,
so that no one may boast before him. 
It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us 
wisdom from God - that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 
Therefore as it is written: Let him who boasts boast in the Lord."
1 Corinthians 1:27-31

God chose a baby boy who would grow up to be a simple carpenter and a servant to be the conquering King over sin and death, just not in the way we would expect. By dying he conquered death. By living again he brings us life everlasting. In losing our lives to him we gain them back forever. In humbly submitting ourselves to him as our Lord, we take our places as children of the King. 

Sin bound us in chains as prisoners of the enemy. God's plan has already redeemed us and all of creation. We are free, we are redeemed, we are loved. When we are weak, he is strong. 

Yes, it is quite a plan. It is perfect as he is perfect, and we can't mess this one up. We can only refuse to accept the gift. That would be a tragedy.

If you know Jesus as your Savior take a moment to thank him for the beauty and simplicity of his plan, and for bearing the burden of our redemption on his own. We call it God's plan, but it is  only one part of his plan for the world. He is working it all out every moment of every day until it is time for his return.

If you don't know Jesus as your Savior know today that this plan is for you. Talk to someone who can help you understand what it's all about. Accept the gift. 

God had been preparing people throughout all of history for the birth of the baby who would be our sacrifice. Now he prepares us for the day when he will come again in final victory over the enemy.  He always does what he says he will do. We can trust our lives to him and our eternal futures. 

Today think about the awesomeness of God's plan and the patience and care with which he is working it out.  Think about the awesomeness of your Savior. 

I am praying for you today. 


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