Christmas is a time we focus our attention back on Jesus. We endeavor to keep Him at the forefront all year, but life happens, we get distracted, things pile up, and we start missing days of Bible reading, prayers become hurried, and some Sunday’s we are just too tired to make it to church.
We look at our lives throughout the year and think of all the craziness we deal with daily. As crazy as life may get, think about Mary in the middle of all the craziness she dealt with concerning the birth of Jesus. From having to travel from Nazareth to Bethlehem, shepherds showing up to see your son, the one they say angels sang about, to wise men presenting extravagant gifts, I’m sure Mary’s head was swimming.
But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.Luke 2:19 ESV
Mary did not allow herself to forget what the angel had said. Instead, she treasured the events around her and pondered them in light of Gabriel’s words. If you read the Christmas story multiple days in a row, you’ll notice different aspects of it jumping out at you, making the story all the more extraordinary in our minds.
Christmas is a time set aside to think upon our Lord’s first coming; we should allow these twenty-five days to be the catalyst of thinking about Jesus every day in the next year. There are four gospel records, the same stories from different perspectives. The enemy would like nothing more than for us to approach the gospels with an I already know that attitude. We can’t afford to do that; the idea of skimming the story repulses our love for the Savior; that’s why the enemy tries so hard to distract our daily reading.
What did it mean for Mary to treasure and ponder the events, and how should that impact us today? To treasure or keep (in the King James) means preserving, protecting, and defending them; she conversed with them in her heart. Mary did not allow the fact she did not wholly understand the promise to stop her from believing it. She may not have completely understood all the prophecies about her son, but she trusted God.
We have the same opportunity in our lives to treasure and ponder the person of Jesus through our daily Bible reading and prayers. There are promises throughout Scripture to hold on to, meditate on, and thank God for. Resolve in your heart that next year will be a year of pondering who Jesus is and what he has done for you. Read through and study portions of the gospels. Read a harmony of the gospels to get a complete picture of each story and parable. Consult commentaries and read sermons to help gain a better understanding and get to know the stories better and in a fresh light by reading from different translations.
The enemy wants nothing more than for us to bypass the gospels, don’t give him the satisfaction of you skipping or skimming over the life of your Savior. Get to know Jesus better next year by treasuring and pondering the gospels in your heart.