Only Jesus Remains– 57.Living Christmas

by Elizabeth Burgard Fulgaro copyright 2020

Oct 22 to Jan 6 reflections from an upcoming book for tending hurting hearts at Christmas

Jesus emptied Himself. He did what was required. Not just manger and cross, but throughout. Thirty-three years.  Living a different way with a clearer view. The God-view. Of what life’s actually about and how it is to be done.

 What was it like to be eternal, infinite God confined to a human womb and then be made vulnerable to human choices and human care? What was it like to be enthroned with the angels and now suddenly living in first century Israel with all its “modern” (not!) conveniences? Angels all around yet dependent on humans. To live as human and mortal while God and subject to impact of good and evil choices of those fallible ones you created.

Yet, yet, yet Jesus is the Way. He underlined that how it was for Him will be the norm. What you can expect.  His life demonstrates the victory and omnipotence of God working through all things. Through no room at the inn and impoverished birth status, to hasty exile and decades of obscurity. Time passing. Wasted? Not in God’s view. Every moment to be God-imbued and Spirit-guided.

 All in obedience, which was love. For Father and the just-as-obscure other.  Each person mattering equally to the heart of God. This is what Jesus’ obedience revealed. God made flesh. God Most High.  God over all. Omniscient. All seeing. All compassion. In everyday life and in greatest suffering. In torment still obedient. Never complacent. Attentive to Father so attentive to each one. God-led. And so, after He ascended, Jesus sent His Spirit.

 Spirit-led. Spirit comforting, but also Spirit-guided. This is your role. It brings the Christmas Present and makes Him present. That which is not of this world still in the world and loving each one unto death and through death unto Him for all time.  Not by your power or even your will, but His. Jesus emptied Himself of all wants and desires and goals, except Father’s (God’s).

Spirit longing to use you. Not forcing. Always aware and comforting, too.

Do only what He says.  As He leads. Get time alone. Time alone with Him. So you can bring His presence to others. To be that God-emptied vessel. Yes, be present to Him and He will be present in you and through you.

He knows what is needed. (You do not.) In His presence, your heart will grow more whole again. Emptied. And He will flow out through you more, which is His balm to you and His love through you exquisitely.

This Jesus-like living which is where God can use you in that place where life is less unto “more”.  It is the paradox of life in and for God. This is not a surface cheery face, but a transparent vulnerability that does not pretend.  It is an ongoing, joyful availability to God. Looking to Him. Leaning on Him. Listening. Ready. Like Jesus. What now, Father? What now?

Holy, holy, holy are You, Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are filled with Your glory. How beautiful You are! You were, You came, You are present and coming again. All in all. All through you. The only life in You at all times. You surrounding. Your being the Source of life and life to come. The continuum of life unto death yet unto true life which is and always will be, whether I choose to recognize it or not. True God from true God. Begotten not made. One in being with the Father. And You sent Your Spirit. The One upon whom I lean now. Spirit, You are the one who leads and guides and still the worshipful, awe-filled prayer which must break through my lips and vibrate with humble palpitations out and up as incense to You: holy, holy, holy are You. Yes, Holy. For there is none like You nor will there ever be another. You are One. You are love and You are leading and leading me and each one through.  Holy Spirit, I need You. Holy Spirit, I want You. Engrave on my heart more the truth of who God is and what He wants. Help me to hear ever clearer Your voice and to lay down my life to obey without hesitation. Every day. Every moment. Not my will but Yours. Yes, with Your help this is and will remain my heart’s cry. Not my will, but Yours. Holy, magnificent One, may Your reign of love increase in this world, for it is already fullness in the world to come.

And while they were there, the time came for her delivery,

And she gave birth to her Son, her Firstborn; and she wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room or place for them in the inn.

Luke 2:6-7

SONG Recommended: ETERNAL WISDOM YOU ARE LOVEChristmas Worship album

ONLY JESUS REMAINS PODCASTS

LIVING CHRISTMAS PODCAST

If you are just joining in these reflections, read the Introduction here to learn what these are all about.

for mini-devotions subscribe or connect on Facebook at Spiritual Armor and Ammo .

Author: Elizabeth Fulgaro

I am a God-seeker--a Jesus-worshipper--a Holy Spirit follower. I create songs, devotions, prayers, books and Bible studies to give words with which to get to know God more. For you. Its for one-on-One encounter unto transformed, transcendent living. This is not my vocation. I am not professional. I am a real, ordinary person just looking to do what God put me here to do. (You have a unique purpose too.) So I am called to the work. It is not my income source, but my gift to those who find it blessing. Eagles Nest Foundation sponsors all projects for you. The result: pure, clean spiritual nutrition to feed that deep insatiable spiritual hunger which eventually overtakes each of us and galvanizes you to the life God has for you. This life is purposeful. Exceptional. You--yes, you--are called to something greater and more satisfying in His service. So it is hoped you'll try this spiritually dense nutrition and find it to be a personal blessing. However, the goodness of God-following doesn't stop there. He uses those who seek Him to be His love and care (justice, mercy, advocate, kindness) very tangibly in the lives of those around you. Not by your power but by His. His ideas. God ideas. Not just good ideas. To be part of changing the world, if you will let Him. You learn to just follow where He leads. That if you listen, He will teach you to hear His voice and then when you obey His inner promptings you will become His incredible hands and feet in this hard world. These materials will help! They will help you aim your life towards God in a way you never look back. You will not be the same. He will become the River in your desert spaces and you will become a conduit of this same River of refreshing, replenishing Water of Life to others. Find a prayer. Pick a blog post. Read a book. Be led deeper into the Bible. Select a song which resonates and use it and use it again to go close and ever closer to the God who longs to draw you near. Oh, and don't be tempted to think I'm a crazy over-spiritualized loony...My background is financial planning and counseling. Almost 40 years of it. To choose to believe in God is not to leave practicality and reason behind, but to learn that there is that which goes beyond it and includes it, unto true life fulfillment beyond all your dreams for the one who keeps seeking Him. I am a third generation Californian. I am a person to whom family means everything. The only priority higher is God. The foothills of the Sierra Nevada are my home. It is here the 1849-1856 Gold Rush is still glorified. Easy money? Actually only for the few. Even though I was raised in the Church, it took me ten years of doubting God even existed to realize that without Him, no matter how much of this life's "stuff" is accumulated, I actually have nothing. To come to know that all those who chased after gold are dead and all those who still chase stuff will be dead. That's when I became a God-seeker. Looking for that more. And Eureka! (This is California's state slogan and means I found it.) I found God...or rather, I discovered He was there and had been there waiting for me to look for Him the whole time. May you discover more of Him for you, greater flourishing life and greater flourishing for all in the world as well. God bless you! ~Elizabeth

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