Take Note


First Focus

Take Note

In the Music Ministry’s performance of “Time for Christmas,” we were drawn to the manger to look up and see the bright light from Jesus’ eyes staring back at us and to rise in the new life we receive from him. I’m so grateful—and overwhelmed—with everything we experienced together Sunday night. I could not have been more pleased with the variety—and the offering—of our best of First Baptist to the newborn King. What better way to treasure—and save the memories—than to reflect on God’s presence in our midst.

Sunday morning, I gave you a blank Kairos journal. It’s your “Advent gift” from First Baptist. You’re officially commissioned as a journalist to record the times when God’s plan interrupts your schedule. Of course, sometimes we’re blessed enough to see God’s presence and experience it when we’re ready for it—as we did Sunday night. Most of the time because of the busyness of life and the burdens of sin in our world, we’re just not ready. God’s plan collides with everything we’re trying to manage.

When John was arrested in Mark 1, Jesus went public with ministry, proclaiming the gospel to the world and recruiting some of John the Baptist’s disciples to follow him. He recruits us to do the same and does so in times when we least expect it. These are Kairos moments. Some are positive, like the comfort from a friend in a time of need. Some are negative—the unexpected diagnosis, the change in job or home, the struggles with a child or parent. These moments awaken us to God’s presence right in front of us.

The Gospel writers, also known as the Evangelists, took time to write down Jesus’ presence in their midst. I’m inviting you to do the same in 2015. Take note of where and how you see God at work. You don’t need an audible voice from Sinai to know of Christ’s presence with you. Just watch and wait. Like a reporter on the scene, scribble a note or phrase. Write a story.

I’m not going to invite you to turn these in or force you to share what you’ve written with others. I do invite you to share around the kitchen and restaurant table with people you trust. Kairos notebooks are great discussion starters for parents—and children. No matter how you use your notebook, bring it with you to church; we’ll scribble a few things here as well.

By this time next year, you might even be someone like Mary. When she heard and saw the shepherds, she “treasured these things and pondered them in her heart.”