Summary: Christmas reminds us that God turns pain into a promise
PAIN INTO PROMISE – How God turns suffering into promise.
Have you been disappointed at Christmas?
Luke 2:35 A SWORD WILL PIERCE YOUR HEART –
Why does Luke skip the pain? Because that was temporary - not part of the goal
Praise in Pain - "Glory to God" – the focus is on the Glory, not the Pain
...That the thoughts of many will be revealed – PAIN BECOMES THE DIVIDING LINE BETWEEN FANTASY AND REALITY
Is it possible that we find Jesus in Christmas in our pain? Or in their pain?
Our pain reminds us that life is temporary -
Christmas is actually a very good time for grief. Because sorrow has a way of disbursing fantasy nonsense and pointing us to what the birth of Jesus was all about: death’s destruction (1 Corinthians 15:26). Jon Bloom Desiring God
“Living the Dream?” Life is not a fantasy - "a big house on a hill" – it is real, and it really hurts some times.
How are we "birthing" Jesus into our world in our pain?
ONLY JESUS CAN SATISFY MY SOUL
Why Am I Disappointed? Steve Fuller
When I feel disappointed by God it’s because at that moment there’s something I’m longing for more than him, whether it be healing, employment, a child, a wife. As good as healing, employment, children, and marriage are, none of them will come close to satisfying me as much as God himself will.
Living in Reality – Life is not a two hour movie, but even Hallmark Movies have a Problem!
USELESS WORDS - Be real – it is not like God doesn’t know our pain
Where is God? Why does this pain happen?
TIME Magazine Cover – "GOD IS DEAD" – their proof? Evil? Getting Worse?
How come our President can quote the Bible during times of tragedy but the same Bible cannot be read in public schools that might help divert some tragedy?
The existence of evil proves there is a better standard
MEDICATING PAIN (SIN) – PAIN PROVES WE NEED HELP
What do we do without God? Are we better or worse?
Pain Happens – Jesus shows up in the middle of it all.
LIVE DEEP – EVEN IN THE PAIN, LIVE DEEPER
WHERE IS GOD? GOD IS CLOSE TO PAIN
Ps 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Ps 34:18
Immanuel = GOD WITH US (not just the happy people)
FULLNESS OF TIME? When our pain and purpose and passion all collide with the heart of God
What is redemption salvation for? Failure, brokenness, messed up – not for perfect people
Great tragedies occur even at Christmas. A greater tragedy is when a young man likely went to Hell. The greatest tragedy is that some people are happy about it. We all deserve hell. I am the hypocrite!
THE "WHY" OF LIFE IS WHY DID JESUS DIE? FOR OUR SALVATION – the answer to every question – THE WHY IS A WHO – JESUS AND YOU AND THEM
WHAT CAN WE DO? HOW CAN GOD TURN PAIN INTO PROMISE?
1. Be Present – get in someone’s life, their house, your house - Sit in Ashes Job 2:8
It is about PRESENCE, Not PRESENTS - Be in His Presence, Bring His Presence to People, Bring people to His presence
2. Don’t say anything until God says something – “little angels in heaven “ doesn’t help
We don’t know what to pray (Rom 8) so ask God
3. Say something by the Holy Spirit
If we do not have anything spiritual to say, maybe we are not truly Spirit Filled
God turns our pain into promise when we are willing to live through the pain in light of a greater outcome.
YOU ARE A PROMISE – (most likely from someone's pain) this is not accident. People suffered for this. Mary suffered, Jesus suffered, Peter, Paul, and Stephen suffered,
WHO will our suffering be for? Who will become a PROMISE because of our PAIN?
Will we waste our pain? Or birth something for generations? Are we content to suffer for no reason?
LET GOD BIRTH A PROMISE THROUGH OUR PAIN