Christmas invite card

The Christmas Files

Every year, I ask God to do something in my heart. I want to see something I have overlooked or taken for granted. The unfolding details revolving around Jesus’ entry into human history have become almost too familiar. So every autumn, I read expectantly to see a part of it that makes me say, “Hmm.” It’s not earth-shattering; it’s just relevant and significant. Through the years, God has been faithful to speak into my heart the “aha” moments that have soothed my soul.

This year, the result of that experience was “The Christmas Files,” our new series that begins on Sunday. Our team has enjoyed this journey of preparing to share that with you. But I want to encourage you to be ready to share it with your neighbors, too. Christmas has become a time of openness for people. More and more, I hear people talk about the weariness that creeps into this sacred time. Shopping, parties, lights, decorating, juggling family obligations (especially MULTIPLE family systems). But at the core of what we celebrate is the beautiful simplicity of the Gospel. And your neighbors are more open to giving that Gospel a hearing than any other time in the year.

I hope you’ll join us for “The Christmas Files” and that you’ll approach this season with refreshed curiosity and thanks. One of my “aha” moments came with the daily news. Just under 6,000 miles from here, Ukrainian believers are sifting through Christmas with completely different hopes: lights, heat, food, and safe shelter. THAT reality changes my perspective tremendously. Every day they wonder where missiles will strike. Their greatest need is the security of a Savior who has conquered death and provided them with a confident hope that they can face these dangers.

So when you find yourself frustrated that you can’t juggle a busy schedule, your shipment will be delayed, or that the home your building is far behind schedule and over budget, remember our brothers and sisters in Ukraine. They need the Savior who understands when there’s no room, no heat, and scarce food. They need the Savior who became a refugee in another country. They need the Savior who would not withdraw from other people’s pain. HE is the Savior who faced that for us, as well. HE is the Good News that we all need.

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