November 30, 2011 Devotion Sharing (O Come, O Come Emmanuel)

Submitted by Michelle S. from Gracepoint Berkeley Church

We need to be saved from endless envy, strife and quarrels.  None of us experience the heaven’s peace as we are constantly at war within our souls, particularly our desires that are unfulfilled.  Jesus has come to deal with our unholy and incorrect desires, to bind it to one desire that will bring peace.  We are plagued with many of our own desires that are in conflict with other desires and if we get all we want, we end in destruction.  Only God’s holy desires are what will bring peace to all of us.  I am reminded of what Jesus said in Luke 19:42 “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace – but now it is hidden from your eyes.”  The problem is that we do not know what would bring us peace.  Only God could bring us together.  There is a lot of strife because my desires are not the same as God’s.  One true sign that Jesus is the Savior would be because He is able to bring salvation and unite His people.  He can bring true peace to people who do not know how to find peace.  There will be no more violence and no more of hatred and strife.  It’s so tiring to live life and it seems so hopeless because our desires are winning the battle.  I see people who are not able to find peace because they need to fend for themselves constantly.  The quarrels we have, the desire to not be taken advantage of, the desire to not be the only one who is left behind… so much strife and angst.

 

Submitted by Sieun C. from Gracepoint Berkeley Church

Lord, you see how broken and mangled this world is, how we are captive prisoners to a system that either sends us through horrors and misery and breaks us, or blinds us from the true state of our lives that it’s going to end in death. The more I do your work and try to embrace people, I get convicted more and more that this is the state of everyone, that we’re all captive and desperately in need of you. And you saw this all along and had this amazing redemption plan ready. I don’t know how I somehow stumbled upon this path, how you found me and brought me onto this path, but I thank you for entering into this dark and broken world to bring salvation to us, to your people who were held captive. We love darkness, I love darkness, yet each time, you shed light on my path, reminding me of what my darkness led me to, and you show me through the broken lives of people around me that it’s something so universal, it’s something I need to hold as my greatest weapon and greatest treasure to share. Help me never to buy into the lies of this world as I remember my own brokenness and how even the best of human efforts cannot thwart death, mistrust, strive, or envy. Your way of life is true wisdom, your way of life is what is beautiful and the way things are meant to be. I pray that as I end this year and confirm this as true, that next year will be yet another year of committing to this and becoming increasingly convicted, especially as we take on greater ministry responsibilities. I think about the students under my care who recognize the strife and emptiness in this world. May each of them come find you, our Day-spring, who lifts the clouds and brings light into our darkened hearts and lives. May they find you the true source of wisdom and guidance in this life, apart from whom our lives will always be filled with envy, strife, quarrel, and with no peace.

Thank you for being our Emmanuel God who came to be with us, that you saw us held ransomed captive, and you came fully knowing the suffering and grief you would go through. I pray that as I grow in understanding how this is the only solution in this dark world, that my life too can emulate the being with and suffering life that you lived out for me….

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