From The Minister...
Every month Melbourn Baptist Church Minister, Stuart Clarke gives us a roundup of the latest work and challenges within the Church. This month's article is below.Archive >
‘The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel’ (which means ‘God with us’).
As we move through advent there is a special excitement of expectation that Christmas is coming. This expectation needs to be one that aims to celebrate the miraculous birth of God on earth, rather than the consumerist rush, that so easier entices us to celebrate the gifts rather than the giver.
We need to be reminded this Christmas that God communicates to us through 7Gs - Great, Generous, God, Gives, Good, Gracious Gifts to spiritually bless one another for God’s glory.
The beating heart of Christmas is a God whose heart beat began in the womb of a virgin. Christmas has a miraculous birth at the centre of the celebration. I have been thinking about the miraculous nature of birth recently.
As we together celebrated the Baptism of Bethany Weeks recently I was reminded of the new life found in being Baptised. Salvation, that is at the heart of Baptism, is miraculous in nature, as God reveals himself in the soul of humanity. The celebration of new birth found in Baptism.
After celebrating Bethany’s Baptism, I was given Martha Chapel to hold for a few moments. I had the privilege of holding and praying for Martha when she was just a few days old. The miracle of a new born baby brings celebration into families. It is Martha’s first Christmas this year.
For some of us what about the birth of our own children and those miraculous moments of holding your own flesh and blood. Those moments of child development when they get there first teeth, walk, talk and start to relate to you with character traits that sometimes you recognise as your own.
We again perhaps can deeply reflect on the nature of God this Christmas as we recognise that the son of God had character traits of his heavenly father and was nurtured by Mary and Joseph his earthly parents.
What a responsibility Mary and Joseph had as they watched him grow, go through child development, and go beyond nature as he did miracles.
Jesus who talks of being born again as he relates to Nicodemus. Jesus whose life, death and resurrection brings the miraculous nature of God’s eternity into our souls. Jesus whose eternal miraculous nature can be born again in our lives so that Christmas becomes the celebration of a miraculous birth.
To help us focus on the miraculous birth of Jesus this Christmas we are going to be looking at the Miraculous births that occur in the Scriptures that point to the miraculous birth of the Messiah. Will you celebrate the real meaning of Christmas and celebrate the giver of good gifts by sharing Jesus this Christmas?