devos from the hill

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Boils at Christmas

Mars Hill Staff Devotional
Part 2

“Tis the season to be jolly?” With mass shootings, war in the middle east, an economic cliff, etc,. where’s the joy? For our staff devo yesterday, we also looked at a Christmas message in the middle of the book of Job 19:13-27   (via Ray Stedman… Follow the link below to read the full lesson).

The old Christmas carol tells us to “Deck the halls with boughs of holly … ’tis the season to be jolly,” but I have noted, as I am sure you have, a very strange and somber mood this Christmas. The energy crunch has kept all the decorations from the streets, and not many houses are showing bright lights either. It is a rather dull and gloomy Christmas in comparison with those of the past. Most of us feel the somberness of this occasion, especially as we read in the newspapers the chilling stories of cruel and ruthless murders occurring in many places today. We know that famine is spreading in the Sahara, war clouds hang over the Mideast, and corruption in politics still occupies the front pages of our newspapers.

Many people today are asking, very honestly, “What is there to celebrate about Christmas?” Perhaps many of you are facing personal sorrow in your own lives, feeling pain and tragedy. And despite the joy of family reunions there is an inner pain and darkness.

I had lunch this week with a man who told me he had all the outward marks of success. He was eminent in his profession, had a beautiful home and a lovely family — all these things that people count as important. And yet inwardly he was filled with a constant agony and a sense of self-doubt. Many are feeling this way. “Where is the joy of Christmas?” they say.

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Light in the Darkness

Mars Hill Staff Devotional
Part 1

We studied this Rembrandt painting, “The Adoration of the Shepherds”. Notice the ladder forming a cross above Jesus, the rooster (a sign of betrayal) over him, and the source of light in the painting . . . Jesus Himself. He is the light in our darkness. Check back tomorrow for Part 2. (click on photo to enlarge)


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Test of Faithfulness

Mars Hill Staff Devotional
The Test of Faithfulness
from Oswald Chambers


As Christians do we really see Christ as our Lord and our life…or do we see him as just another worker? An equal co-laborer?

We know that all things work together for good to those who love God . . . —Romans 8:28

Key Take-away: The goal of faithfulness is not that we will do work for God, but that we will be free to let Him do His work through us.

from Oswald Chambers’ My Utmost for His Highest: