Tag Archive for Christmas devotional

Mysterious Wonders

There were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:8-12, NIV)

Imagine the mysterious wonders of that first Christmas night.

A world-changing event, foretold for centuries, was actually happening, and only a handful of the commonest people knew it.

God Himself was becoming flesh and blood, arriving as the most helpless of creatures: a human infant.

This child had been conceived by an infinite spirit being and a young virgin, probably a teenage girl.

Imagine what the shepherds saw and heard and felt. In the blackness of a silent night in the open fields, suddenly a blazing light, a stunning message, and a sky full of angels.

But how would the shepherds recognize this “Savior…Christ the Lord”? What would make Him unique? It would be His shocking lowliness and poverty. They would find an infant, wrapped up like a newborn, lying in a feeding trough.

Imagine yourself a shepherd, on the ground, gazing out into the blackness, hearing only the night sounds. 

Listen and sing:
Hymn: The Shepherd’s Carol
Printed Music & Lyrics

from Prepare Yourself for Worship

Prepare for Christmas

Father, this Christmas
as I prepare for worship,
prepare me to receive Your Gift.
Prepare me to receive
Your life,
Your love,
Your wisdom,
Your complete well-being,
Your wholeness,
Your harmony,
Your joy,
Your purity,
Your constant enabling.
Prepare me to receive
Yourself in
Your Holy Son, Jesus Christ.

Help me to welcome Him into
all my thoughts and
all my desires,
into the priorities that rule my every decision,
into all my daily habits, and
each of my personal relationships.

A gift is only valuable when it is received.
This Christmas, help me fully receive
Your priceless Gift,
the Living Christ. 

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Jesus, the Gift of Christmas
Printed Music & Lyrics

A Multitude of Angels

In both the Old and New Testaments, the words translated “angel” literally mean “messenger”. Many times God sent individual angels to deliver His message to selected persons on earth: to Hagar (Genesis 16:7-12), Abraham (Genesis 22:11-18), Moses (Exodus 3:2), Gideon (Judges 6:11-12), Zechariah (Luke 1:11-20), Mary (Luke 1:26-38), and many more.

On the other hand, visions of heaven speak of multitudes of angels. These multitudes appear in the visions of the prophets Micaiah (1 Kings 22:19) and Isaiah (Isaiah 6:1-4) and in John’s visions recorded in Revelation (5:8-14; 7:11-12). These angels are shown serving God through obedience and praise.

But I know of only once when God sent a message to earth, not through an individual angel alone, but through a multitude of angels. This multitude was sent to announce an event that would be the turning point of all history. At that moment they would bring the praise and glory of heaven down to earth.

It was night. The place was the sky over an open field outside a small village on the eastern end of the Mediterranean. Only a handful of shepherds saw and heard this one-time appearance:

Suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.” (Luke 2:13-14, NASB)

The event they announced had been whispered since the beginning of human history. This event was a Gift, prophesied for centuries by God’s seers. They had spoken in common images of a Child, a Shepherd, a Servant, a Warrior, and a King who would somehow be beyond all titles, all descriptions, and all imaginings. This Gift was a coming, a personal arrival, and on that ordinary, extraordinary night, the arrival was now:

Transcendent God had taken flesh and blood.
Holy God was, now and forever, wholly human.

Heaven itself had come to earth. The One who had sat on the throne was now an infant lying in a feeding trough. But for just a few moments that night, He brought His throne-room choir with Him.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: A Song Was Born at Christmas
Printed Music & Lyrics

Christmas Is the Story of a Star

Christmas is the story of a Star.
The wise men had studied the stars for years, but suddenly,
One Star
caused them to leave home
on a long journey,
traveling many difficult months.
That One Star
was a sign from heaven,
and they followed.

One Star
was their only guide
all the way from a distant country
through so much desert
and so many midnights.
One Star
led them to
a simple house
in the tiny village of
far-away Bethlehem.

One Star.

Christmas is the story of a Star.
The story reminds us that
God never leaves us alone.
Even in the blackest night,
He always sends
One Star.
And our Star is

Listen and sing:
Hymn: The March of the Three Wise Men
Printed Music & Lyrics

Christmas Is Past, Present, and Future

Christmas is more than just a celebration of a past event,
however wonderful or important.
The God who came to us as an infant still comes to us
now as then.
He still comes to us as marvelous, mysterious Life,
drawing us toward Himself.

He is still the Light in every dark place,
the Star shining from the bottomless blackness,
the fresh glow in every dingy stable.

He still invites the magi and the shepherds,
the highest and lowest of people.
He still comes in stunning humility,
yet in unearthly glory.
He is still awe-inspiring in
His transcendence and
His simplicity.

The God who came
is still coming.

And He is coming again.
As before, He will come
after a seemingly endless wait, and
at just the right time.
But this time, He will come,
not quietly,
but with sound of a trumpet;
not simply,
but with all of heaven’s angels;
not in a dark corner,
but where every eye will see Him.
He will come,
not as a helpless infant,
but as sovereign Lord and Judge of all.

The God who came
is coming and
will come again
in love,
to save completely all who will receive Him.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: God Is Here among Us
Printed Music & Lyrics

Christmas Is a Story of Love

Christmas is a story of Love.
For hundreds of years,
Love had whispered,
“I am coming!
I am coming to be with you,
to stay with you forever!”

It was Love that celebrated that night
in the skies over Bethlehem with
music, and
shouts of praise.

Love was the shining star
high in the sky,
sent to draw people from far away
to come and worship the Baby.

And Love has entered our hearts.
We can feel it drawing us
to love and worship God.
We can see it gathering us together
to celebrate His coming.
And we can sense it reaching out this Christmas
to share with the needy all around us.

Christmas is a story of Love,
Love that has come to us,
Love that has brightened our lives;
and Love is

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Love Has Come!
Printed Music & Lyrics

Rejoice in Your Destiny

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us,
so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
(2 Corinthians 5:21, NIV)

The Christmas story is so simple that a child can enjoy it, yet so broad and deep that no human mind can grasp it all. A Being so magnificent that He spoke the universe into existence from nothing—He merely expressed His will and it appeared—this Being became entirely human and lived among us.

We could see and touch the One who transcends all matter. What we saw, what we touched was love—pure, complete, compassionate love, in a world soaked with fear and selfishness.

This Being became humble. How could the sovereign source of all be humble? The immense God became small for us. Perfect wisdom, perfect peace, perfect love became small and simple enough for us.

In this One, our mortality took on immortality. The human has become divine. Humility glows with Majesty. Weakness is now strength. Our darkness now shines with the splendor of Almighty God.

Look at Jesus Christ. He has become what we can be:

  • a creature one with our Creator;
  • a child of man and a child of God;
  • thoroughly human, yet holy and divine.

Look at Jesus Christ and rejoice in your destiny.

O God, for me make
the waiting and hoping of Advent
no longer just a season,
but a constant hunger for You.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: The Lord Has Come!
Printed Music & Lyrics

CHRISTMAS JOY Devotional Tapestry

CHRISTMAS JOY Devotional Tapestry

Devotional Tapestries are short recordings designed to draw your heart and mind to the Living God. Each includes a devotional reading over instrumental music, leading into a hymn.

Listen to CHRISTMAS JOY Devotional Tapestry.

Printed devotional & hymn

More Devotional Tapestries



Christmas brings a promise of peace. Hear the prophecy of Isaiah:

“The wolf will live with the lamb…
The infant will play near the hole of the cobra…
They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain,
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as waters cover the sea.” (Isaiah 11:6, 8-9, NIV)

At the birth, hear the words of the angels:

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace.” (Luke 2:14, NIV)

Peace is an absence of all conflict. But peace is not just an absence, it is a presence. Peace is harmony. Peace is complete well-being. It is wholeness and rightness. Peace is the reign of love.

Peace is Jesus.

He himself is our peace. (Ephesians 2:14, NIV)

He will be called…Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his…peace there will be no end. (Isaiah 9:6-7, NIV)

The fruit of His presence is peace (Galatians 5:22). He brings peace to relationships. He brings peace with God our Father. He brings peace in the midst of all the pressures and troubles of this world.

Do not be anxious about anything, but…present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7, NIV)

Trusting Jesus brings peace. Seeking Him alone brings peace. This Christmas, receive the peace of Jesus.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Sweet Peace
Printed Music & Lyrics

You Come

God, so eager to give,
You came to us.
You gave Yourself completely,
birth to death.
You became like us,
so that we might become like You.

Holy God,
breath of love,
unbounded Spirit,
You come to us.
As we trust You,
though imperfectly,
You give Yourself to us.
You live and breathe as
Christ in us,
eagerly sharing Yourself with us.

God of unfailing promises,
You will come to us again.
At the perfect moment You will come
as a bridegroom comes,
eager to sweep away His bride on their long-awaited day.
All the universe will celebrate with us.

You came once,
in love.
Come again, Lord Jesus.
We are waiting.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Our God Came to Visit
Printed Music & Lyrics