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December 24th “Expect The Unexpected”

2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16

Luke 1:26-38

When someone makes you a generous offer, you don’t expect to have it turned down and then then to receive a better offer in return. When a king arrives you expect an audience of nobles and powerful people, not shepherds and livestock. When the people of Israel looked for a Saviour, they didn’t expect him to be somebody like Jesus, or that salvation would be offered to all humanity, and not just them. But that’s the way God works, at least from a human point of view. From what we can see, when it comes to the way God blesses and loves us, we can always “Expect The Unexpected”.

December 17th “Unexpected Blessings”

Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

John 1:6-8, 19-28

This is the way the world seems to work: the poor only expect to get poorer. Prisoners must live out their sentences. The powerful take first place. But God’s love for humanity turns the tables on what we expect. In God’s world the poor are blessed, prisoners pardon, and the powerful, even when they are good people like John the Baptist, take second place. With Jesus on the scene, there are constant “Unexpected Blessings”.

December 3rd “Unexpected Returns”

Isaiah 64:1-9

Mark 13:24-37

Advent is about waiting on two levels: we look back to Jesus’ birth with bated breath, knowing the outcome yet waiting excitedly as if His birth had not yet taken place. At the same time we wait longingly for Jesus ultimate return, the moment in time when God once and for all sets everything straight between Creator and Creation. Waiting, however, isn’t just sitting around patiently; anticipating all the Jesus offers us can have wonderful “Unexpected Returns”.

December 10th “Unexpected Consequences”

Isaiah 40:1-11

Mark 1:1-8

John the Baptist’s entry into the world, like Jesus’ own birth, was predicted by the Prophet Isaiah. But when the Baptizer arrived and got to work, he built upon the prophecies about Jesus’ work. It seems that there are life-changing, “Unexpected Consequences” when you let Jesus rule your life.

Expect The Unexpected

Our Almighty God had a pretty simple plan: Create the Universe; Create a special species for mutual companionship; enjoy eternity together. It was a pretty good plan, but it didn’t last. The very same genius and curiosity that would all humanity to enjoy their Creator’s company was the unexpected fly that shattered the relationship pieces. Yet the Almighty had a plan in place even for that contingency; and despite our constant disappointments, God has never, ever given up on us. This series explores the way God keeps reaching out to us, sometimes clearly and obviously, sometimes quietly and subtly. One thing we can be sure of: when it comes to our relationship with God, we can “Expect The Unexpected” both from God’s end, and ours!

St. James Presbyterian Church

310 McNaughton Avenue West Chatham Ontario N7L 1R9

Email: office@stjameschatham.com

Phone: 519-352-1240