PurposePoints: Minister Musing on Ministry & Misc.
by Dr. James R. Brooks (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Christmas is nearly upon us. The store shelves are teaming with holiday decorations. The television overwhelms us with the items we “need” to give to those we love.
This year, I think that our best approach to Christmas is not to “give.” Please understand me. I encourage “end of the year” giving to the church. It benefits your tax situation and the congregation’s financial health. Financial giving is spiritually healthy. Giving to the church and the needy is a highly valued behavior for all of us. When we consider our relationship with the risen Lord, born this Christmas season, let me suggest something more profound, adoration.
When was the last time you adored?
I think that adoration is one of the most difficult activities for us to engage.
Adoration is selfless. When we adore God, we focus entirely upon God. How hard is that? When we approach the source of our life, the fount of our being, the healer of our wounds and the miracle for our loved ones; how tempted are we to bring our worries to God? In contrast, to adore God is to look upon our Lord and refuse all distraction, even the distraction of our most dear concern.
Adoration is primary. We adore God first and foremost. When the three travelers brought gifts to Jesus, they adored Jesus without reservation. The first thing those three men did was to adore Jesus. They knelt and worshipped the baby Jesus.
Adoration is priceless / worthless. Our adoration of God is inadequate to what we have already received from God. Our worship of Jesus is not equal to the love that Jesus extends to each of us. If we adore God with our entire being we would not be able to save our own lives. We adore Jesus because our life is already deemed worthy, valued, and saved. Our adoration is cherished by God.
Adoration is fulfilling / overwhelming. Unknown to many of us, we fail to adore God fully because it would overwhelm us. If we worship God without our worries and pleas, we then sufficiently focus upon God so as to experience the overwhelming love of God. Sometimes, our worries and concerns serve as a buffer between us and the unconditional love that God offers each of us.
Adoring God is so difficult and so rewarding. What does God require? To love the lord your God and to love your neighbor as yourself.
How awesome a call is that? When we adore God, we are shaped to love our neighbor in a wholly spectacular fashion. A fashion that can change a relationship, community, creation.
May the Lord bless us this Christmas season. May we adore the the Son of God born among us.