I. The Chronology of Christmas
II. The Incarnation is scandalous.
A. The plan was absurd. God’s plan was easily misunderstood.
B. The explanations were private, not public.
III. The plan was absurd.
A. God picks people we would never choose to change the world.
B. Who received the memo?
C. Who didn’t get the memo defies our logic.
IV. Take a fresh look at Christmas. Embrace the surprising ways God is showing up in your life.
1) As you look back on your life, what is the strangest thing God has ever done for you personally? Why do God’s ways of doing things surprise us? If we know that God’s ways are different than ours, why do we get surprised when he doesn’t do things the way we would?
2) Can you really expect a surprise? What is the most surprising aspect of the Christmas story to you?
3) If you were Mary’s neighbor, what would you be thinking when you see her three months pregnant? What would you assume to be true when she goes to live with Joseph?
4) Why didn’t God give any angelic visions to others in the story? Why was the scandal public but the revelations private?
5) Why do people gossip? How big a problem is that in the church in general and at our church in particular? Do you talk to people as much as you talk about them? Why is talking about people you don’t talk to dangerous?
6) If God could show up in your life in fresh and exciting ways this year, what would you like Him to do for you?