Think About It!
Because we’re so familiar with the Christmas story, it’s easy to forget Mary was probably a teenager when Gabriel showed up and told her she would give birth to the Messiah. She wasn’t wealthy. Nazareth was a small town. No one in the Christmas story was “special” by worldly standards. God’s majesty and sacred presence came to a very humble place. Part of the hope of the Christmas story is that God entered into the details of the lives of people who were just faithfully going about their business. As we near the end of a tumultuous year, join us this weekend as we encounter the God who shows up right in the details of our messy lives.
Talk About It!
1. The humble setting
- Do you feel special? When the story of Jesus opens, the setting is humble. Because we’re so familiar with the Christmas story, it’s easy to forget Mary was probably a teenager. She wasn’t rich. She was from a small town. There’s no one in this story that was “special” before the story started. The angel came to announce the birth of Jesus to a group of people just living their daily lives. God’s majesty and sacredness came to a very humble place.
- How do you see Jesus showing up in your life? Part of the hope of the Christmas story is God entered into the details of the lives of people who were just faithfully living their lives. All they had to do was obey God, and God did the rest. He gave them all that they needed, and showed up in miraculous ways.
2. The promise of the Messiah
- Was Jesus 100% God or 100% human? The answer is that he was both! That sounds wild, doesn’t it? Well that’s because only Jesus could have done it. He was fully God and fully human. He lived a perfect life and saved us from our sin. Now he is able to stand before God the Father and pray for us. Because he is the God-Man.
- What are some of God’s promises? The Bible is full of promises that God made to his people. The biggest promise he made was that he was going to send a Savior. Jesus is that Savior. When the angel arrives to talk to Mary, he is saying that God is about to fulfill everything he said. Because God always keeps his promises.
3. The miracle explained
- Is there anything in your life that feels truly impossible right now? When Gabriel explains the miracle to Mary, she asks how it can possibly work! She didn’t doubt God, but she also didn’t understand what was happening. She doesn’t question that the miracle will happen, she just wants to know how. When God is doing the impossible, we can trust that he’s got it under control, but we can still ask questions, as long as we’re trusting him.
- How can you trust God with things that feel impossible? Mary trusted God to do the impossible. He was going to send his Son as a baby and save the world. Sounds pretty impossible, right? But that’s exactly what God did. We don’t usually get all the details, but we can believe our God. He is trustworthy.
4. The surrendered life
- Why do you think it’s hard to trust that God knows what he is doing? Humans really like to feel like they are in control. It makes us feel safe. But God is the one who is really in control. Mary knew that she didn’t need to have it all figured out, she just needed to believe that God had it all figured out.
- What can you give to God today? Is there an area of your life where you want control? Or is there an area where you don’t feel safe. Chances are, those are the very areas we need to hand over to God. We don’t need to have it all figured out. We just need to bring our humility and our surrender and trust that God has it all figured out.
Optional Follow-up Questions:
- What makes you say that?
- What makes you say that?
- How does that make you feel?
- How would you explain this to someone who doesn’t know Jesus?
- Why do you think God did it that way?
- Why should we do the things that God tells us?