Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Fourth Sunday of Advent 2010 Reflections

“Celebrating Christmas in the Hospital” (Adapted from Hail the Heaven Born by GKBaker)
Advent is the season of preparation, anticipation and expectation of the coming Messiah, how do we, as people in the hospital, make ready?
Scripture: Matthew 1:18-25
Key Verse: he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him (v.24)
Focus of the Lesson:
Matthew tells the story of two people who gave in to the will of God while putting aside their personal honor and glory. The mystery and majesty of God’s preferred future is shown before us, inviting us to move out of our preferred comfort zones and into the will of God.
Goals in study:
1. To see how God uses unusual and unconventional means for his purpose
2. To understand what “God above all” means
3. To realize how we are instrument of God’s perfect plan
What is your plan for your future? What is God’s plan for you? Are your plans aligned? Often, we map out plans for ourselves without consulting God. Joseph reminds us of the proper attitude this Advent. As we prepare for the coming of the king, our hearts and our desires including our plans should be one with God. Is our work in the hospital according to God’s plan? Or are we doing it for our personal honor and glory? Joseph set aside his own personal honor and glory to put God first. As we prepare this Advent, let us learn from this lesson.
The key phrase in the scripture lesson is “he did what… the Lord commanded him.”
Interpreting the Scripture:
1. Why does Matthew need to set things straight?
2. How did Joseph respond to the situation
3. What does it mean for Joseph to set aside his pride
Sharing the Scriptures:
1. How do Mary and Joseph inspire your faith and obedience to God?
2. How do Joseph’s actions speak to you about honoring God over your personal needs and desires?

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