NOV 26  / Sunday – Read Mark 1:1-8 / Luke 1:5-17, 39-45, 59-80

Overview: Christmas cookies, fruit cakes, and desserts…sweets and Christmas go together. This Advent season’s message series, Sweet Christmas, serves up (literally) a special treat each Sunday – one of pastor Mark’s favorite Christmas candies – and how each reminds him of the coming of Jesus.

27 / Mon – Sweeter than honey  |  Read Psalm 119:103-104

Some fun things about Christmas are special treats that appear during the season: decorated cookies, fruitcakes, gingerbread houses, and specific Christmas candies. Kids seem to love candy the best. What is your favorite holiday treat and why? God’s words have been compared to sweet honey. As you read familiar scriptures this week, slow down and savor the words. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the sweetness they contain and help you gain a new understanding of them.

28 / Tue – Waiting and waiting  |  Read Luke 1:5-25, 36-37

John was born six months before Jesus and his birth was a miracle too. What do you notice about the angel’s message to Zechariah in v 13-17? How did he respond in v 18-20 and what was the result? What about you? Have you, either in the past or even now, prayed about something that seems impossible? Have you been waiting a very long time for the answer you need? God knows all about it. What encouragement do you find in v 37?

29 / Wed – Time to process  |  Read Luke 1:57-64, 76-80

Zechariah did not automatically regain his ability to speak the day Elizabeth’s baby was born. How many days later did Zechariah’s miracle happen? See v 59. What act of faith allowed him to regain his voice? What did Zechariah prophesy, through the power of the Holy Spirit, about his son John in v 76-79? Now reread the scriptures from yesterday and compare Zechariah’s words with the angel’s message to him nine months earlier. What stands out to you? It can take time to process what God says to you. Don’t waste the waiting time. Let it draw you closer to God’s heart.

30 / Thu – God always keeps His promises  |  Read Luke 3:1-6, 15-16 / Isaiah 40:3-5

Notice the historical details in v 1-2. Do you recognize any of those names or places? Context is important. Now read what happened to John when he became an adult in v 2b. This calling was prophesied by Isaish hundreds of years earlier but John had to be willing. Because he understood and gave himself to this mission, people were ready when Jesus was revealed to them. God calls you to the same mission. Use opportunities to prepare others with your words and actions so their hearts will be open to Jesus when they encounter him. What does that look like for you?

01 / Fri – Following John’s example  |  Read Luke 7:24-28a / Eph 2:10 / Phil 2:13

What did Jesus say about John? That is an amazing assessment. John was faithful to obey what God called and prepared him to do. He never compromised, even though it eventually cost him his life. He had amazing results during his relatively short ministry but John never lost sight of his ultimate purpose. What work has God given you to do? If you don’t know, ask and then listen. He will help you accomplish it. All things are from Him and through Him and for Him.

02 / Sat – Chain reaction  |  Read John 1:6-8, 22-27, 35-42

How did John identify himself to the religious leaders? Then notice John had followers too. When Jesus was revealed, John was quick to point them to him. One was Andrew who spent time with Jesus and became convinced. See the power of influence? John pointed Andrew to Jesus. He then brought his brother Simon to meet the Messiah and the rest, as they say, is history. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Ask God to bring people into your life who are hungry to know him. Point them to Jesus every chance you get. You never know how God may use them to change the world.

The GPS (Grow, Pray, Study) Guide provides Scripture and insights to enhance your journey, whether you’re just starting to explore the Christian faith or are a long-time Christian.

If you have a question or comment about the GPS Guide, please send it to: [email protected]

The GPS (Grow, Pray, Study) Guide provides Scripture and insights to enhance your journey, whether you’re just starting to explore the Christian faith or are a long-time Christian.