Browsed by
Month: December 2015




From the book of Zechariah written about 300 years BEFORE the birth of Jesus…


Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!

Behold, your King is coming to you, He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey.   Zechariah 9:9


A young Jewish woman named Mary. Blessed beyond her years. Her understanding of the Torah was more than an act of kindness. Like blood flowing through her veins, the Law was her lifeline to God. Her quiet and gentle spirit set her betroths heart on fire. But, could Joseph handle nine months of turmoil and ridicule? Knowing Joseph’s thoughts, God confirms His plan through an angel…

Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. -Matthew 1:20,21

In awe, Joseph responded in obedience. Together, he and Mary journeyed through uncharted waters. Mary’s heart resounded,

My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior… He has helped His servant Israel in remembrance of His mercy, as He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to His seed forever. Luke 2:47,54,55

The angels shouted with joy. Echoes of praises released. Mary grasped that she was the recipient of God’s long awaited Holy Seed, the Messiah, the Kinsmen Redeemer. All of a sudden, Genesis 17:7 flashes through her mind,

And I will establish My covenant between Me and you (Abraham) and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant to be God to you and your descendants a after you.

Peace filled her. A smile escaped as she gently caressed her belly. In that moment, she realized God’s promised Holy Seed was embedded deep within her womb.


Time moved so fast. Nine months seemed like a flash. Bethlehem? Why now? Mary wondered. Without complaining, she gracefully mounted the donkey. Joseph led the way. With each stride, the birth pangs increased. Under his breath Joseph prayed, Oh, Father please help us make it before she gives birth. Lead us to the perfect place for Your child to be born. Beads of sweat formed on his forehead. Tears formed in Mary’s eyes. Fully trusting, yet filled with fear she recited the prophet’s words from Zechariah 9:9,

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you, He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey. 

A tear escaped as she glanced downward. On a donkey, she murmured. Reaching out, she gently touched his mane. In that moment, she felt her baby leap within her womb. “Behold, your King is coming,” she shouted. Joseph knew the time was nearing, “Hold on, my darling! We’re almost there. The Father has the perfect place prepared for us. There’s a cute little Inn in the heart of Bethlehem. You’ll love it!”


“What do you mean there’s no room in the Inn? My wife is about to give birth. Please help us!” Confused, frustrated but still trusting. The innkeeper pointed them to the stable. With no time to waste, Joseph rushed into the barn. He found a corner tucked deep within the shelter. A midwife was the furthest from his profession. Without hesitation, he accepted the position. Love escalated as their eyes met. He thought to himself, I love this woman so much! Again she shouted, “Behold, your King is coming!”


Then with one push Salvation entered the world. Unspeakable joy echoed throughout the stable. God in the flesh born to a lowly woman riding on a donkey. Together, Mary and Joseph held the Savior of the World in their arms as they recalled Zechariah 9:9…

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you, He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey.  

God brings to his remembrance the angel’s words…  

And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. 

A shout of praise released, “His name is Jesus. Yes, Jesus… Jehovah is Salvation.” Immediately, the King of the World closed His eyes and fell asleep in the arms of His mother who whispered, Behold, our King has come. 


As I sit in my prayer chair on Christmas Eve 2015, tears well up and warmth fills my heart. A shout of praise escapes, “Thank you, Jesus, for choosing to come to earth and provide me salvation. Thank you for drawing me near to You at the age of 12 and providing a place for me in heaven with You forever and ever. Words can’t begin to explain my love for You. Humbleness envelops my soul. I choose to worship You and only You the rest of my days here on earth. For… BEHOLD, MY KING HAS COME! Amen.”

Merry Christmas From My Heart to Yours,

Carla McDougal

Executive Producer of STRONGER

Founder of Reflective Life Ministries




Jesus. Savior. Messiah. Over 2000 years ago, His humble entrance into this world changed our future… forever. God, in the flesh, bringing hope to the world – a world filled with corruption, chaos, and moral decay. In the little town of Bethlehem during the utter confusion of the census, Jesus’ birth silently swept in like a new fallen snow.

  • With no phones, television, or the internet how did the word get out about the Messiah’s arrival?
  • Why did God send Jesus at such a chaotic time of year?
  • As a mom, I can’t image giving birth in an unsanitary stable with hay, animals, and GERMS?
  • Why did the wise men bring gold, frankincense, and myrrh? Why didn’t they bring blankets, baby clothes, and rattlers?

Imagine The Wise Men just doing their thing… being wise. When suddenly, they notice a Star beaming in the East. With all their wisdom and knowledge of scripture, they recall Numbers 24:17, A Star shall come out of Jacob; A Scepter shall rise out of Israel, and batter the brow of Moab and destroy all the sons of tumult.

These men didn’t sit around contemplating the situation. They moved into action. With little time to waste, they headed East following the star. Imagine their journey. Possibly they were singing songs of praise or contemplating what they would say first. With every step, their hearts beat faster and faster. Keeping their eyes on the Star, their pilgrimage ended at a humble home in the little town of Bethlehem. The excitement pounding in their hearts resembled their knock on the door. As the door opened, they see the toddler who was with his mother. The Wise Men couldn’t contain themselves any longer. The Messiah, their long-awaited Yeshua, humbly standing in the midst them. With arms opened, they ran toward the child and fell on their knees before Him in worship and praise. Immediately, they reached into their bags. One-by-one they laid their treasured gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh at the feet of the young boy – their King! Tears puddled beneath them. Physically weary, yet energized spiritually they left this humble abode to return home. Wow, what a trip home that must have been!

The Wise Men’s gifts had purpose and meaning…

  • Gold symbolized Royalty – Representing Jesus as The King of the Jews.
  • Frankincense was a Fragrance – Used in the Temple – Representing Jesus’ Priesthood.
  • Myrrh was an Ointment of Death – Prophesying Jesus’ Death.

God had it all planned out. He directed The Wise Men perfectly, not only with the Star but with the perfect gifts! Through these three presents, God provided Joseph and Mary the financial resources needed to flee to Egypt, escaping the wrath of Herod. These gifts not only provided physical purpose, but also spiritual significance. God used The Wise Men to be His hands and feet here on earth. Oh, what we can learn from these men of God.

Challenge this Christmas Season… May this Christmas be one you will remember as life changing. Not because of the gifts you receive or places you go, but because of the unseen gifts you give to others. Possibly the most precious present you can give someone is the gift of prayer. I challenge all of us to be Prayer Givers this Christmas season. The most beautiful thing about this gift is… It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

From My Heart to Yours,

Carla McDougal

Check out Reflective Life Ministries newest movie production – STRONGER


%d bloggers like this: