First Friday • Advent 2022

December 2nd, 2022

Blessing For A Lonely Night

As I was preparing to write todays post, I spent some time thinking about darkness and how it can also lend itself to loneliness. In this season of advent we place our focus on Mary, Joseph and Jesus and well we should, as it teaches us many value lessons. Mary and Joseph collectively and individually had so much happening to them it’s fair to say darkness and loneliness were fighting for their attention. The Bible gives us passages of God sending angels to guide them, protect them and instruct them. In their moments of darkness, the light of God was sent to them through His Angels.

Matthew 1:19-20 (Angel sent to Joseph in a dream)

Luke 1:26-30 (The Angel Gabriel sent to Mary by God)

“Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?”Hebrews 1:14

The Birth of Jesus the Messiah
Matthew 1:18-25

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,and they shall name him Emmanuel,”which means, “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.

I also wanted to share the birth story of Abraham’s son Ishmael by Sarai’s (later called Sarah) handmaiden/Egyptian slave Hagar. I also believe this is an important story of God’s promises fulfilled when His children are surrounded by darkness and feelings of aloneness. Many place Abraham at the foundation/focal point for Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Abraham is seen by all three religions/traditions to have been a man who put his trust in God. It is my hope that all three find ways to trust each other enough to be able to engage one another with openness and respect.

I believe in the One True God, and I am His creation and it is His will to be done not my own. I am sharing this story because God placed it upon my heart, I know not the purpose but He does.

“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.”

Bible Gateway 1 Timothy 2:5

“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”

Bible Gateway James 2:19
Genesis 21
The Birth of Isaac

The Lord dealt with Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did for Sarah as he had promised. Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the time of which God had spoken to him. Abraham gave the name Isaac to his son whom Sarah bore him. And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. Now Sarah said, “God has brought laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh with me.” And she said, “Who would ever have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.”


Hagar and Ishmael Sent Away

The child grew, and was weaned; and Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned. But Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, playing with her son Isaac. So she said to Abraham, “Cast out this slave woman with her son; for the son of this slave woman shall not inherit along with my son Isaac.” The matter was very distressing to Abraham on account of his son. But God said to Abraham, “Do not be distressed because of the boy and because of your slave woman; whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for it is through Isaac that offspring shall be named for you. As for the son of the slave woman, I will make a nation of him also, because he is your offspring.” So Abraham rose early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water, and gave it to Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, along with the child, and sent her away. And she departed, and wandered about in the wilderness of Beer-sheba. When the water in the skin was gone, she cast the child under one of the bushes. Then she went and sat down opposite him a good way off, about the distance of a bowshot; for she said, “Do not let me look on the death of the child.” And as she sat opposite him, she lifted up her voice and wept. And God heard the voice of the boy; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Do not be afraid; for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is. Come, lift up the boy and hold him fast with your hand, for I will make a great nation of him.” Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. She went, and filled the skin with water, and gave the boy a drink. God was with the boy, and he grew up; he lived in the wilderness, and became an expert with the bow. He lived in the wilderness of Paran; and his mother got a wife for him from the land of Egypt.

In closing, I watched Dolly Parton’s Mountain Magic Christmas on TV last night, I understand that she may not be everyone fan favorite and that’s okay, but she sang a song that I believe we all can relate to. I have included the lyrics below.

Hello God Song Lyrics By Dolly Pardon

Hello God

Hello, God?
Are You out there?
Can You hear me?
Are You listenin' anymore?
Hello, God?
If we're still on speakin' terms
Can You help me like before?
I have questioned Your existence
My resistance leaves me cold
Can you help me go the distance?
Hello God?
Hello?
Hello?

This old world has gone to pieces
Can we fix it?
Is there time?
Hate and violence just increases
We're so selfish, cruel, and blind
We fight and kill each other
In Your name defending You
Do You love some more than others?
We're so lost and confused

Hello, God?
Are you out there?
Can you hear us?
Are you listenin' anymore?
Hello, God?
If we're still on speakin' terms
Can You help us like before?
Oh, the free will You have given
We have made a mockery of
This is no way to be livin'
We're in great need of Your love
Hello, God?

Hello, God?
Can You grant us
Love enough to make amends?
(Hello, God)
Is there still a chance
That we could start again?
Hello, God?
We've learned our lesson
Dear God, don't let us go
(Hello, hello)
More than ever
Hello God?
Hello?
Hello?
Hello, God?
We really need You
We can't make it without You
(Hello, God)
We beseech You
In the name of all that's true
Hello, God?
Please forgive us
For we know not what we do
Hello, God?
Give us one more chance
To prove ourselves to You
Hello, God?
Hello, God?

Songwriters: Dolly Parton
Hello God lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Thank you for stopping by today, may you be blessed as you have blessed me. Keep HOPE alive and seek the Light of Jesus. —Amen.

~Charlotte, Seeker of unexpected Comfort, Happiness, Joy and Patience.

References:

https://www.biblegateway.com/

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Gen.21.1,Gen.21.2,Gen.21.3,Gen.21.4,Gen.21.5,Gen.21.6,Gen.21.7&version=NRSVCE

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Gen.21.8,Gen.21.9,Gen.21.10,Gen.21.11,Gen.21.12,Gen.21.13,Gen.21.14,Gen.21.15,Gen.21.16,Gen.21.17,Gen.21.18,Gen.21.19,Gen.21.20,Gen.21.21&version=NRSVCE

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matt.1.18,Matt.1.19,Matt.1.20,Matt.1.21,Matt.1.22,Matt.1.23,Matt.1.24,Matt.1.25&version=NRSVCE

https://www.faithfulmotherhood.com/loneliness-in-the-bible/

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