My small group has just started a slow read and study through the Gospels. I have prayed God would open my eyes to the treasures in each chapter. Even those that I would normally rush through.
Matthew 1 lays out the ancestry of Jesus, “fourteen generations from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the Babylonian exile, and fourteen from the Babylonian exile to the Messiah.” (Matthew 1:17)
All of this was done to prove to the Jews that Jesus was truly the promised Messiah. In my NLT the commentary states that despite His lineage, the Jews still did not believe Jesus was the Messiah. He was not who they were looking for.
The Jews were looking for Him. They had been looking for him for centuries. But Jesus came in a way they were not expecting. See, the Jews no longer had a true king, not like David or those that came after them. They had found themselves once again governed by an enemy.
God had delivered them over and over. But, for reasons only He knows, God decided to let them have what they wanted; their own way. But in pursuit of doing life their way, they found themselves conquered over and over again. As the New Testament begins, the Jews were now under Roman rule. They longed for the days of King David. To live as their own nation. To rule themselves. They wanted another king.
God sent them the only King they would ever need, the very thing they asked for. He sent himself. But, He didn’t seem like the king they wanted. Not as a baby or as a young man. Didn’t they already know His parents and the shady circumstances of His birth? He was not what they were looking for. God would not use Him.
As I pondered this over the last two weeks, I have asked myself many times, how often do I miss Jesus? How many times does He show up for me in my circumstances and I completely miss Him?
I am at a crossroads in my own life. My daughter has flown the nest. She is doing exciting things in Georgia and I am home. I have spent every minute of the last 18 years taking care of her. Now, I am not sure what to do with myself. While I still have work, my husband and my beloved pup; I feel untethered. I am anxious. I am frightened. A little lonely and sad. I find myself looking for a new ‘thing’ to fill my time.
But my next steps have not come as I thought they might. There hasn’t been a great revelation. No dynamic offer. There hasn’t been a huge road sign telling me what to do next. No, my next steps have been to get quiet. To turn down the noise in my life. To focus on praising God. To focus not on what I need to do next, but on who He is in my life. Where have a not made room for Him.
I was looking for something to fill my time. I turned up all the noise in my life. I didn’t want to feel lonely or disconnected. I wanted the next opportunity.
But God is so merciful. He pursues us. He loves us so completely that He won’t leave us where we are. He has been whispering and knocking. “Come with me Teresa. Rest in me. I am more than enough for you. I don’t need you to do anything for me. I want you to be with me.”
Forgive me LORD, for missing you. For looking for you in media and busyness. Thank you for never leaving me. Thank you for never getting frustrated with me. Thank you for whispering to me “you are my beloved and I am yours.”
Let’s not miss Him. Take time each day to praise Him. Take time to look for Him in the ordinary. He is there. He is always there.
Teresa Neal is a Christ follower, wife, and mother. Her passion is to see women grow in their relationship with Jesus and understand how great His love is for them. She is attends LCBC Church in Waynesboro and leads a women’s life group. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.