Captured By Wonder
Topic: Holiday Messages Verse: Luke 1:26–1:38, Proverbs 16:9
Captured By Wonder
Week two of our Christmas series.
Control is the enemy of Wonder
The tighter we cling to our plans, the greater we limit God and our experience of wonder.
Luke 1:26-38 NIV
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” 29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” 34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.” 38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
WHAT'S MORE IMPORTANT: My Purpose OR My Plans?
“I am the Lord’s servant.”
My purpose in life to serve the Lord must always trump my plans.
Proverbs 16:9 NLT
9 We can make our plans,but the Lord determines our steps.
Living a Life of Wonder
A life of wonder isn’t just about a one-time decision; it’s about a series of on-going choices where we keep on surrendering our plans to the Lord’s purposes.
Choosing Wonder over Control
1. Try something new
Step out of your comfort zone
2. Do something different
Break up your routine
3. Experience something big
Let yourself be awed
4. Let something go
Choose to be less busy
5. Give something away
Control is the enemy of wonder so we need to have this spirit of openness and availability before God—and to be willing to surrender our plans to His purposes for our lives. Pastor Dan
1. On a scale of 1-10, how planned and structured are you? How does your all-planned-out or your go-with-the-flow show up during the Christmas season?
2. Read Luke 1:26-38 and think about the rest of Mary’s life. How do you think Mary felt as she realized her dreams and plans were changing? Do you think any of Mary’s plans for her son Jesus worked out?
3. What are “God’s purposes” for our lives? Are they the same for all of us or unique to each of us? Consider these verses and explain.
* 2 Timothy 1:9
* Romans 8:28-29
* Micah 6:8
* Psalm 96:1-3
4. Share a time when your dreams and plans for your child or job or relationship unexpectedly changed. How did you feel? In what ways have you seen God’s purposes work out in your life because of this change?
5. In Luke 1:38, Mary said, “I am the Lord’s servant. May your word to me be fulfilled.” She was willing to alter her plans to fulfill God’s purpose for her. Are you God’s servant the way Mary was? How could you develop more of a spirit of openness and availability before God?
6. Which of Dan’s five applications grabbed your heart? How could you respond in a way that fulfilled God’s purposes for your life?