Summary: A sermon for the 4th Sunday in Advent.

Luke 1:26-38,46-56

“When God Comes To Town”

God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth to speak to a young virgin named Mary.

“Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

And what was Mary’s response?

It was a very human response...

...she was both troubled and stricken with fear.

The fear is understandable, I mean, an angelic being from God was standing right in front of her.

But Mary was also troubled by his words because she couldn’t understand how God could so greatly

favor a person like herself!

Have you ever felt this way?

I have.

One of the biggest obstacles that gets in the way of our accepting the the grace and mercy of the Lord is

our lack of self-esteem!

How could God love a sinner such as I?

How could God save a sinner such as I?

Why would God want to come inside of me and live inside of my heart, body and mind?

Of course, the answer is simple, “For God so loved the world...”

Recently, I was driving down Jefferson Avenue when I saw a bumper sticker on the back of a car in front

of me....

...there was one of those big yellow smiley faces on it...

...and the words said: “Smile, God loves you!”

They are simple words, but they convey the greatest and most liberating truth the world could ever


God loves me, God loves you, God loves each and every one of us!

How easy it is to not notice or not believe this truth...

...especially if we are not part of the ‘in’ or so--called ‘popular’ crowd at school or at work....

...especially if we have been born in very modest circumstances....

...especially if we don’t have the greatest job in the world....or our boss treats us as his or her door mat...

...especially if we are loaded down by the guilt of our sins...the guilt of being human beings who live in a fallen


We are naked!

We did hide from God in the Garden!

How could He love us....

....we’ve been so bad!?

Well, God has sent great news to us through the angel Gabriel!

God does love matter what!

We are highly favored by very highly favored!

And what a blessing this great news is!

The Lord is with us!

The Lord is with us even when we would least expect Him to be...or when we ourselves do not even

know Him at all.

The Bible tells us that it is God who first loved us... is not us who first loved God!

God is busy working in all of our lives....

....even when we are being the most rebellous or the most apathetic....

....even when we are hurting others or hurting ourselves....

....even as our depression and lack of self-love has reached it’s zenith.

Even, even....even then and always Jesus says: “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears

my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”

Have we heard God’s voice?

Have we felt God’s love?

Have we smiled because of it?

When I recieved my faith... first, I was a bit frightened and troubled.

I owned a business that was doing pretty well.

I was my own boss....

....but I was being called to do something else.

All my life I had heard Jesus knocking on the door of my heart.

I had felt the call to go into the ministry as early as four or five years old.

I even entered college believing that I would become a minister....

....I remember thinking....

.... “I don’t know how I’ll do it” ....

... “I’ll have to change my whole way of life.”

Well, I didn’t become a minister after graduating from college.

I became a t-v news reporter, and I was miserable....and I was stuck in the self-depreciating pattern of


Then I opened my own business...a rock and roll tee-shirt shop.

I had given up on God.

I had forgotten the One Who loves me.

Here I was selling Marilyn Manson tee-shirts to 14 year old kids....and low and behold....the Lord came

to me and in essence said:

“Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

I was blown away!

I started reading my Bible again, and attending church again.

My entire persective on life changed.

I remember walking up to a friend and saying: “You know, life is worth living after-all!”

I started selling sweaters instead of rock tee-shirts....

....I let the lease run out on my store....

....and one day I thought to myself....

.... “For some reason God has been calling me...little old me...little sinful be a minister and I have been

Copy Sermon to Clipboard with PRO Download Sermon with PRO
Talk about it...

Nobody has commented yet. Be the first!

Join the discussion