God Thought 12/21/22

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.  

Luke 2:8-18
Even though it's the most wonderful time of the year, as the carol states, there still is a need for prayer - whether that's to give thanks to God for all his blessings or simply to ask for His help in handling the stress or difficulties the holiday season can bring. Prayer awakens our soul to God's presence, faithfulness, and refuge.

But have you ever found yourself not knowing what to pray? Maybe your prayers become dull or repetitive, and you feel as if you're praying incorrectly? Your confidence in your prayers will be strengthened when you pray God's Word.

The Bible is full of prayers! From Genesis to Revelation we find prayers we can borrow to enliven our spiritual lives. These supplications express every kind of emotion and experience - just look at the Book of Psalms!

As we read the stories, history, poems, and parables of the Bible in the presence of God and pay attention to the Spirit, we will identify passages that relate to our lives, the world, and the people we know. Over time it will become natural to turn these thoughts into prayer immediately.
Read Luke 2:8-18. How did you hear about and experience the good news of Jesus? In this story an angel visited a group of hardworking shepherds and announced that something important was happening in Bethlehem (v. 11). So the shepherds traveled to the City of David, where they found Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Once they saw the Child, they went around telling everyone they knew about the birth of Jesus and what the angels had said about Him (vv. 17-18). 
How can you act like shepherds, telling everyone about Jesus, particularly during this time of year? Pray that God would work in the hearts of those you know. Be a good listener and friend rather than judging people. Demonstrate the gospel message through acts of service, not just words this Christmas. Pray that the quality of your life and relationships would help draw people closer to Jesus. 

YouVersion Bible Plan
Abide in Jesus - 4-Day Advent Devotional
Day 4
We would like to thank HarperCollins/Zondervan/Thomas Nelson for providing this plan.

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