December 2005
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Extraordinary Days (con't)

The part of the story that says, "But Mary treasured these things and continued to think about them," has always stuck with me. The King James says she "kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart." She listened awestruck as the shepherds told what they had seen. It added to the word that God had privately given her and Joseph. A little later she would meet another group of men from another side of lifeómen of wealth, influence, and education. Their story agreed with all that she had seen and heard. And Mary continued to ponder those things.

She ponders this tiny, fragile bundle wrapped in bits of cloth lying in a feeding trough on a dark and chilly night. She ponders the young child growing up in her home as he plays with his brothers and sisters and begins to learn his father's trade in the carpenter's shop. She ponders these things as she discovers they have ridden off without her twelve year old after visiting the temple in the city. And when they rush back to find him, she ponders even further as she learns this young man has spent his time teaching the teachers! He's safe and sound, because his Father is watching over him as he is about His business.

Mary ponders all of those things that happen as she sees him leave home to begin a public ministry among every kind of person imaginable. He becomes a great teacher to thousands making the words of God become flesh. He touches the untouchable, speaks the unheard of, does the impossible, and reaches into the heart of mankind in a way never seen before or since. And Mary ponders all of these things.

And on another extraordinary day Mary ponders as she learns of her son's arrest, torture, and crucifixion. Almost alone, she ponders at the foot of a cross as his last breath is released and this life like no other grows silent in the dark of midday. For three days she ponders as only a grieving mother can, but on the third day it seems that years of treasuring up all that Jesus had done and taught came together! Eye had not seen nor ear heard the wonders God had prepared for those who love Him...until now!

This Christmas, what will you and your family be pondering?

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Strawberry Baptist Association
163 West Main, Bedford, VA 24523

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Updated 11/4/2005
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