Something that I shared with the Willow production team at our Christmas party…
This year, I decided to participate in an advent experience. It is nothing more than reading every day from John Piper’s Good News of Great Joy (BTW, it’s free). While reading through this, it struck me that it is probably the first time I’ve done something advent-y since I was a kid and we lit a candle on a horizontal wreath each Sunday during December.
So far, it has been a good thing to help me wrap my mind around what Christmas is actually is about.
On the 4th of the month, the reading talked about how God orchestrated the prophecy of Christ being born in Bethlehem, using Caesar Augustus to have this idea of a census to get Mary and Joseph away from Nazareth. I love this picture of God moving the chess-like pieces around to create the perfect situation for His son to enter the world.
The funny part, is that once they get to Bethlehem, God has forgotten to provide them a place to sleep? After all the work of moving governments around, God the Father simply forgets to make a reservation?
It turns out that what I would have done, or what might make the most sense to our human minds, was exactly what God decided not to do..be born into Caesar Augustus’ family and then just take over. To change the world through strength. He could have but didn’t.
Instead, God chose to use Mary and Joseph, her sister Elizabeth, a bunch of shepherds…basically normal people. Ordinary. Flaws and all. He chose an unlikely place for Jesus to be born…one that people could say “Only God” about.
God wanted to make it very obvious that
1. He could orchestrate things however He wanted.
2. He was intimately involved.
3. He wanted to use the ordinary to redeem the world.
As I look around the technical arts community, I see God’s plan continuing today. No offense, but we are a pretty ordinary bunch. If we were to dive into all of our stories, we would find a similar theme to Mary and Joseph’s situation: God’s orchestrating hand; that He is intimately involved with each aspect of our story, and that he has been using us to help redeem the world.
If I were to orchestrate the perfect plan to help save the world, I still think I would imagine it totally different from how God has designed it. He has decided to use us…OK, I guess.
However, if God’s plan is to use ordinary people, I can’t imagine a better group of ordinary people that I’d rather be associated with. He has used our uniqueness and our specific makeup to reach out to the world. He has used us as technical artists to help get His message out. I love that there is a place for each of us to contribute to His plan.
We’ve all been a part of many unique experiences this year, all of which God has used and is using to help God’s people in all our churches become more Christ-like.
Thanks for your willingness to let God use your ordinariness to redeem the world.