Bible Society of South Africa
Danny Fourie

God’s grace, love and power – Day 4

Can we still be surprised about something?

Bible text(s)

18All who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said.

There are many things we take for granted. The day when load shedding happens in your neighbourhood or the water in your area is cut off, we realise how accustomed we have become to a switch and a tap. In fact, it is actually something special. Turn on the tap and there is water; put the switch on and there is light or the stove gets hot. Insert your plastic card in the ATM – who is still amazed when it gives you banknotes? Skype with your children abroad or get on a plane and, within two hours, you can fly between Cape Town and Johannesburg, and fly back home tonight. Who among us are still amazed by these wonderful inventions of our time?

The lack of wonder, unfortunately, also applies to our spiritual life. Most of us have more than one Bible, and many of us are part of faith communities. We often hear that God loves us – to the extent that he even became a human being by sending his Son, Jesus Christ to us. But who is still excited and amazed about this?

I envy those people from the Christmas story. They were stunned. “How can such a thing be?” they asked. For me and you, the Christmas story has become so ordinary – like opening a tap or turning on a switch.

The birth of Jesus was really incredible. With that, God showed that he cares much more for us than we realise. And that he wanted to do much more to reach out than we ever thought.

That is why the people in Luke 2:18 were so surprised and amazed – that God could act in this way. They did not think that it would happen – that God would really be born as a human being in order to come close to us.

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