Day 20 | Tim Ward

Day 20 | Tim Ward
John 1: 14-16

John 1:1 states, “In the beginning was the Word, and the
Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Then, in John
1:14 we read that the Word was made flesh. Literally, God
became flesh – Jesus. He is not some great prophet or
teacher that taught the ways of God…Jesus is God.

The words “dwelt among us” translates to “pitching a tent.”
My family loves to tent camp. When I think of my many
years of camping with family and friends, I think of intimate
times around the campfire, being in creation, relaxing, and
stripping away the things of the world. When I think that
God – Jesus – came to pitch His tent next to mine and share
life with me; it brings me great comfort.

He didn’t come to lord over us, condemn us or set some
unattainable goal for life, but He came to dwell with you
and me. He came to sit by the campfire, share life, and to
take us away from the distractions of this world. He came
full of grace and truth. The real truth…not some twisted
fabricated truth that tickles our ears. He came with a truth
that sets you free.

Think about Jesus and the woman at the well. He sat with
her in an intimate place like sitting next to you at the
fireside. He loved that woman enough to call out her sin,
love on her and set her free. He loves you that much, and
he wants to sit by the fireside with you and chat. Take some
time to hear His truth, and listen to what He has to say.

Day 19 | Ja’Monda Davis

Day 19 | Ja’Monda Davis
John 18:33-38
33 So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called
Jesus and said to him, “Are you the King of the
Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your own
accord, or did others say it to you about me?” 35 Pilate
answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief
priests have delivered you over to me. What have you
done?” 36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world.
If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have
been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the
Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” 37 Then Pilate
said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say
that I am a king. For this purpose, I was born and for this
purpose, I have come into the world—to bear witness to
the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my
voice.” 38 Pilate said to him, “What is truth? After he had
said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told
them, “I find no guilt in him.”

This section of scripture leaves many things to observe. It is
interesting to consider that Jesus knew Pilate’s heart and
thoughts during their dialog. In the natural, Jesus was on
trial, with Pilate attempting to find a cause for the
judgment of Jesus. However, one could surmise that it was
actually Pontius Pilate who was on trial, as he stood before
the righteous Judge, the living God in the flesh. Pilate had
the long-awaited Messiah standing before him, but he did
not recognize Him as such. Pilate’s view was a narrow view
as his perspective was based on the world, and what he
could see before him. However, Jesus in verse 36 of this
passage explained that His perspective is not based on or
limited by this world. His thoughts and ways are so much
higher than our thoughts and ways.

Day 19 (continued)|

Jesus saw far beyond the moment when he talked with
Pontius Pilate, and He sees beyond our circumstances,
beyond our generation, and into eternity. All earthly
kingdoms will come to an end, but God’s kingdom will reign
forever. Finally, in verses 37 and 38, Pontius Pilate and Jesus
spoke about truth, with Jesus referring to absolute Truth and
Pilate speaking of relative truth, a topic that has been
argued about until this very day. In the reading of this
scripture, I am challenged to try and see things from an
eternal perspective. There is a reason why the Bible calls us
to walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7) and to
trust in the Lord with all our hearts, and to lean not on our
own understanding (Proverbs 3:5). God who spoke the world
into existence, created us all, and died to save us sees the
big picture. We can be deceived and led astray when we
lean on our own understanding. It is for great love, mercy,
grace, and protection that God calls us to faith and
absolute Truth. His ultimate plans are good for those who
love him and are called according to his purpose.

Jesus Above All

Day 18 | Kristi Laughinghouse
Hebrews 1: 6-9

Jesus Above All

Angels are heavenly beings that God has always used to
accomplish his work. They have been at important events, at
mighty battles and at the birth and death of Christ. He uses
them in heaven and on earth. But while God created them
with beauty and mission, he never created them with the
glory bestowed on our Lord and Savior. They are created.
Christ always was and is and is to come. Their true mission has
always been to worship the Lord. They rejoiced in the heavens
when the Savior was born, and they will continue to worship
him when he comes again and for eternity. We can allow
things like angels to distract us from the ultimate gift that is
Christ. They are merely instruments to accomplish his plan. But
in him, is the fullness of Christ, the anointed one, the Savior.

This Christmas season don’t get distracted by the things
around and Christmas, but be distracted by the center of it all
– that is Christ our King his throne is forever!

God Speaks to Us

Day 17 | The Ferrelll Family
Hebrews 1:1-5

God Speaks to Us

In Advent, we remember a world for the satisfaction of the
wrath of God, holding to a hope beyond the fallen world.
Like us, the writer of Hebrews looks back on this waiting. We
have seen the expected, shattering arrival of God in the
flesh to Earth. The promise of a savior that was made at the
fall of man was fulfilled in the Son, the “radiance of the
glory of God “making the purification for sin.

The wait for a savior has ended, and so we celebrate. Yet,
still we wait.

As we wait, let us rest, knowing that we look to the same
God who created, promised a savior, and came to us.
Having seen the abundant provision of our merciful God,
we wait with the freedom to lay down our own strivings.
Instead of working to save ourselves, we work to bring
others to this hope.

Celebrating and Rejoicing

Day 16 | Christian, Kimberlee, Elsa, Emmett, & Bowen
Matthew 2: 7-12

Celebrating and Rejoicing

When the wise men saw the star rest over the King for
whom they sought, they rejoiced exceedingly with great
“Rejoice exceedingly with great joy…” this phrase catches
our attention. What does it mean to rejoice exceedingly
with great joy? Celebration comes to mind as having a
similar definition. Celebration means to acknowledge (a
significant or happy day or event) with a social gathering
or enjoyable activity, while rejoice means to feel or show
great joy or delight.
During the holiday season, our family does take time to
celebrate. We acknowledge the significance of the
coming of God in the flesh as a baby and reread the story
in Scripture. We take a few days off work and school and
spend time doing sentimental activities with our loved
Do we take the time to rejoice as we see the wisemen
doing when they meet Jesus? What does it look like to feel
great joy as we spend time with Jesus?
As we contemplate what this might look like in our family
this year, we remember that the wisemen came from afar,
and they were not Israelites. When they met Jesus, they
worshipped him. Their worship may have looked different
than typical Jewish worship and customs. Jesus ushers in
the worship of the Gentiles.
Our prayer is that we all will not only celebrate Jesus but
rejoice in him with great joy. May we be free to show our
delight in him in true personal expression and find unity with
those who share our joy in Jesus and express it differently.

Where Will You Be Found This Christmas Season?

Day 15 | Ed & Christy Shepherd
Luke 2:40-47

Where Will You Be Found This Christmas Season?

The humility of Jesus blows me away. Coming to
earth as a baby, wrapped in human flesh. Allowing sinful
human beings to raise and teach him. Practicing the
customs of the Passover which, unbeknownst to those
around him, were customs that foretold the fate and
salvation to come through the blood shed by this young,
wise boy in their midst.

Luke tells us that Jesus, the child, grew and became
strong, filled with wisdom, and the favor of God was upon
him. He also notes that Jesus chose to stay behind in
Jerusalem in order to sit among the teachers, listening to
them and asking them questions. Jesus was singularly
focused. He knew who he was and whose he was.

So where are we in our journey to conforming to the
image of Jesus? Are we walking on this earth with similar
humility? Being a child of the king, and all the while being a
servant to all? Sitting at Jesus’ feet in prayer and in His
Word, forsaking the many distractions? Let us be found
sitting with Jesus, listening to Him, and asking Him questions
this Christmas season, learning from Him and rejoicing in His
undeserved favor.