24 days. 24 chapters. A JOY SEEKING journey from chapter one through chapter twenty-four!
NOTE: All scripture references are from the New International Version, unless otherwise indicated.
Welcome Joy Seekers! The 2018 – 2020 Countdown to Christmas Through the Gospel of Luke reached many visitors and readers with the joy and hope of the gospel story. This little adventure I launced in 2018 will now be in book form for 2021. Sign up here and I will update you on the release date. Thank you so much to everyone who read my blog posts in 2020 and engaged in the joy filled journey of the greatest story every told!
Enjoy the teaser of chapter one below!
I discovered a wonderful Christmas tradition a few years ago and am delighted to share it here with you. The gospel of Luke is full of joy, from the opening phrases until the final words of the book of Luke.
Beginning December 1st, together let’s read one chapter of Luke each day through December 24th. 24 days. 24 chapters. Perfect!
By Christmas Eve, we will have read all 24 chapters – an entire account of the birth, ministry, sacrifice on the cross, and resurrection of Jesus.
We will wake up on Christmas day knowing WHO and WHY we celebrate! JOY to the WORLD!
I’ll update daily below. Thanks for joining me in this journey of joy seeking!
Before we get started, here’s a song based from Mary’s song in Luke 1: 46-55. This song makes my heart overflow with joy as I sing it. We sing this in my home church every Christmas season. Do you know it?
To help keep you inspired, motivated, and encouraged to fully experience the full depths of joy in countdown, I’m sending out weekly email reminders. You can sign up here: Christmas Countdown.
In the emails I’ll share a planner worksheet and the daily prompts for your time of reflection on the joy you discover in these scriptures.
Also, if you’d like to read my prior year’s thoughts on this countdown in Luke, you can find my blog over on my lifestyle blog at JoyfulKetoLife.com.
Check back daily as I’ll add my update each day.
Ready to countdown? Here we go…3, 2, 1!
December 1. Chapter 1.
The unborn john leaps for joy!
Breathless anticipation bubbles up every year at this time. Sure, as a child it was all about the presents. And now, of course, it’s all about His presence. It’s like hearing an old, old story over and over again that just keeps getting better and better.
What’s in store for us in this story, God?
From staring at the pile of gifts under my sparkly lit childhood Christmas trees, fast forwarding to seeing the sparkle in my children’s eyes as they stare at their pile of gifts, and landing in this season of grown children with quiet and stillness, sipping coffee and settling into another good story in His Word. Always asking myself “What’s in store, Lord?” I will never tire of this.
But I am tired. Tired of this year. Tired of seeing my friends and family struggling to make sense of pandemics and shutdowns. Tired of the struggles in my own home. Every day I’m asking the Lord, “God, what’s in store?”
I’ve been thinking a lot about the 400 years of silence between the Old and New Testament stories of the bible. Wow. I bet there were many faithful servants of God over these generations wondering the whereabouts of God. We are what, nine months into global pandemic challenges? Compare that to 400 years. Perspective.
So, I breathlessly anticipated this journey through the gospel of Luke. Luke picks up after those years of silence with some themes we desperately need in this season. The first being joy, and I don’t know about you, but I need to constantly seek joy so I’m not sinking in the events happening around the world and around my own circle.
The next thing I need is a plan. A little secret about me…I’m a checklist checkity-checker, type A, calendar loving gal who didn’t pencil in global pandemics and family struggles for the year 2020. Lord, what’s in store?
What a relief to find the plan in Luke chapter 1, which is where we start today! There are so many lessons packed in this long chapter, but right from the introductory chapter, we can see that Luke wrote this gospel to strengthen the faith of all believers. I don’t know about you, but I sense we all need an extra dose of strength today.
God’s plan for salvation is revealed through the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies here in Luke chapter 1. And it’s all wrapped in a bow with the promise of joy. What an amazing gift!
We find joy in the conception of John the Baptist to an elderly Zechariah and Elizabeth. Imagine the overwhelming joy hearing this news by a barren and faithful couple. The angel Gabriel announces that John’s birth will bring great joy to his parents and many people will rejoice over his birth. Their community even rejoices with them over the birth of John. In verse 58, I love that their neighbors and relatives shared in their joy. There is no room for gossip and jealousy when God is working His plan! They shared her joy.
The unborn John even leaps for joy in the womb when he is in the presence of the unborn Jesus. Picture this meeting of Elizabeth and Mary–I see a joyful and heartfelt time of sisterhood. So much joy resulting in so much praise and worship of the God who is revealing His plan of good news! When the muted Zechariah was able to speak again, his first response was praise to God. What a joy filled scene.
After all those years of silence, these faithful and obedient servants of God were hungry for some good news. Mary’s song in verses 46 through 55 testify to this in a spirit of rejoicing. I personally praise God every day for the truth she shares in verse 53a:
“He has filled the hungry with good things…”
Through my journey of physical, emotional, and spiritual healing I recognized the depths and depravity of my hunger. I realized I craved all the wrong things to satisfy my soul. Today I testify to all the good things He fills me with and it’s not food. I’m grateful for the blessing of His joy and the ability to choose joy every day in all circumstances. That’s the satiating goodness I choose.
The weary world rejoices…
This is why I wanted to share this joy seeking journey with you. The book of Luke is a wonderful journey full of the promises of God’s plan of joy to the world. We may be weary and worn-out, but as we spend time in His Word every day this Christmas season we will rejoice! And I just bet it will change your perspective a wee bit and leave you with breathless anticipation!
Ponderings: How are you struggling today? Are you asking God the right questions? Recall in the chapter that Zechariah asked doubtful questions and ended up mute, while Mary asked insightful questions to gain a deeper understanding. As you ask these hard questions, where are you finding the joy in this chapter to apply to your journey? Please leave a comment below, or over on my Facebook post.
© 2020 Christine Trimpe LLC | ChristineTrimpe.com
Joy to You! Merry Christmas.
What a bittersweet journey we have traveled together, friends. Don’t they (whoever they are?) say “all good things must come to an end.” Hmm. I believe this is just the beginning.
The beginning in living out the life Christ calls us to live. We’ve learned some really practical and powerful lessons from Dr. Luke. And the Word is meant to penetrate our hearts—which brings us to ponderings.
Oh, one last thing. The weary world rejoices…now that’s a thrill of hope. Enjoy the song which inspired this joy seeking journey of the Countdown to Christmas Through the Gospel of Luke.
Be Joy Fueled and Merry Christmas,
PS: Many of you have asked what’s next? What should you study? I’ll be sharing my favorite bible study resources in a document with you. It will land in your inbox soon. If you don’t receive my emails, sign up here Countdown to Christmas to receive the document. Thanks for asking!
© 2020 Christine Trimpe LLC | ChristineTrimpe.com