Lutheran Church Extension Fund

The Incarnation: An Intellectual Difference Maker!

Reading time: two minutes. The best part of children’s Christmas programs is that the kids are learning the story.  I hope Sunday Schools still have the children memorize the parts.  The story sticks.  How many of us (especially us old-timers) can recite right along with them, “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host…” The story of Jesus’ Incarnation is the greatest story ever.  We love to tell it.  We celebrate it in song and praise.  It’s the story that shapes our own stories. Intellectual wellbeing is having a curiosity to learn and discover and to marvel at what we learn.  Maybe this season of remembering the story of Jesus birth and life among us will be an encouragement to share our own stories with one another!There’s always a danger that the Christmas story will become nothing more than history, an irrelevant story of a guy from long ago.   We help history become a living His-story when we share how His story has become my story.  That’s the great thing about the Incarnation.  The Son of God becoming flesh makes a difference for my life here on this earth. As people of faith, temples of the Holy Spirit, Jesus is living His Incarnation life in us these days.  What’s your story?  How has Jesus been making a difference in your life lately?  Are you ready to share your story with others around you? When Ralph Neighbor returned from decades of missionary service among the house churches of China, he brought back to the church in the US wisdom and guidance for the growing small group movement.  In one of his books, he suggested that he could teach your church everything they needed for the first two years of their small group ministry in about fifteen minutes. Neighbor’s suggestion was to get people into groups of eight or a dozen, open with prayer, read a scripture passage together, and then ask, “What is God doing in your life?”  He suggested that one question would keep you busy, interested, learning and growing for a couple of years at least. That kind of curiosity on both levels, considering what God is doing in my life and listening carefully to what God is doing in the lives of the people around me, is the essence of fellowship, community in the body of Christ. We can learn so much by studying the life and words of Jesus Christ.  That learning comes alive when we listen and share what Jesus is doing in us.  And it’s intellectually healthy. His-story is still being made and told. Maybe a great conversation for this week after Christmas would be to ask each other, “So what?  What does Jesus mean to you today?” God bless your continuing celebration of the great story, still unfolding among us! Thanks for reading. Do you serve on a professional church worker conference planning committee?  Our staff has vast experience leading groups of all sizes from every church work background through innovative wellness programs custom designed to meet your needs.  Contact Program Director Darrell Zimmerman today to begin exploring the possibilities or visit our website to see some of our ideas for your conference!