Two stories relate the message I want to remind you of this Christmas.
- There is an old story about a teacher who did not believe in God. Not content with that, however, he tried to discourage his students from believing in God as well. One day, as the Christmas season approached and questions about God were being asked, he sent a pupil to the chalkboard with instructions to write: God is nowhere! The pupil obeyed but inadvertently divided the last word, so that what was written on the board was, “God is now here!”
- On Christmas Day 1934, in China, two missionaries were being held captive by robbers. They were bound hand and foot, and gagged so that they could not communicate with each other. As they lay on the dirt floor of the hut in which they were held, one of them began to wiggle his limbs until he had pushed pieces of straw into position to spell out the word “Immanuel“. The message of the one word brought joy to both men’s hearts. In their desperate plight, on the day that commemorates our Lord’s birth, they drew strength and comfort from the name that means “God with us“.
God is for us (Romans 8:31), God is in us (Christians – Romans 8:9-11), and God is with us (Matthew 1:23). Those are wonderful truths to concentrate on during this Christmas season. Those are the kinda truths that we can encourage each other with. Those are such powerful realities that our lives should never be the same again.
In addition, please know that your church staff is for you and with you. We love serving God, serving you, and serving in this place. Thank you for being for and with us. We feel loved and appreciated.
Your Fellow Laborers,
Lucy, Marsha, Teresa, & Steve