I wanted to take a few minutes and share a Christmas message with you…4 days before Christmas. I hope you feel the spirit of my message…and follow through these last few days before Christmas.
It has been a wild year, and the year has passed far more quickly than I expected or wished. So many things have happened…it seems the world is on fire and about to collapse, maybe it is and has. But not is all bad, nor is all lost…last Sunday reminded me of that.
My wife and I teach a Sunday School class of teenagers (15 – 16 year olds) twice a month at church since October. Each Sunday has been a good experience, some more good than others. Last Sunday was amazing! But let me set Sunday’s context first…
We were running a little late Sunday morning, so we felt a bit rushed. Also, we had a fair amount of snow earlier that week that hadn’t completely melted off. But it had melted somewhat each day during the day…then froze solid at night. We have a rather long and steep hill of gravel and cinders that is about a mile from our house that we travel to leave our little valley area, the slope faces due north.
Do you see it coming yet?????
As we pulled through the gate of our drive/road I felt the urge to take the back way out…a far easier hill, far less steep, but somewhat longer. But, I ignored that prompting and headed to the normal way out. In 4wd, 1st gear, I was about 75% of the way up the hill when I felt the tires start to spin and our forward progress stopped abruptly. No problem…I would put it in reverse and back down the hill…I’ve done that before. Ah, not this time.
As soon as I had applied the brakes the Explorer began slipping backwards down the hill. Somehow I managed to keep the Explorer on the road…till I couldn’t. We began to slip off the road and a huge Juniper tree loomed large in my rear view mirror. A couple seconds later we came to a gentle stop off the road, no damage to the Explorer, and the Juniper about 5’ from the back of the tailgate. We were safe…albeit stuck after a 150’ slide downhill.
To shorten the story…I walked back to the house, retrieved my truck, returned to the bottom of the hill, walked my wife down the hill, drove to church, and arrived 10mins before our class was to start.
A couple other teachers didn’t show up that day so we had our normal mid-teens plus the 12 – 14 year olds as well…a large class with a bunch of kids we had not had in class before.
It was an AMAZING class on the last 3 books of the Old Testament!!! I mean it! The kids were great, the class went really well, it was just an amazing spirit filled and fun 50 minutes!
We left church on a spiritual high…even with the experience earlier in the morning on the hill. The class proved to be a tender mercy from a loving Heavenly Father to be sure! We even got a text message from a 13-year old’s mother that evening who wanted us to know their child loved the class that day and he had told her so. A blessing on top of a blessing!
So the point of this message is this…
We have had tough times, all of us, and we are going to have more tough times, all of us…but there will be blessings, there will be tender mercies. Many of them, maybe most of them, will come from our children. But those blessings will come! Some of those blessing can also be from us to others.
This Christmas there are people who need us, they need our compassion, they need our love, they may even need our help…please give it. It may be a smile and a heart-felt hello in the next few days…or throughout the next year…give it. If you see a family struggling…help them. If you see a person stressing…help them. If you see a child with conflict…help them.
Just please, please help folks the best you can. Give service, give of yourself, give of your time, give of your substance if you can. I am just asking you to help others. There are a lot of folks who need help of one kind or another in this world right now…please help them in any way you can…in any way you feel prompted to.
Thank you!! I appreciate all you do more than you imagine. I know how tough this world is right now…and I know how bad it is going to get. But I also know there is great hope out there…some of it comes in the form of children…some of it can come from inside you.
Remember the reason for the Christmas season…Jesus Christ, the Son of God. He lived His entire life in service to us…please give even a small part of yourself doing the same…serving others as you feel prompted.
Please bask in the love of Jesus.
Thank you…and Merry Christmas!
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Thank you for the transparency, too many of us are afraid to share our “awful” experience with others, we are afraid we might look dumb, enept, etc.. Thanks you for the knowledge you share. A fellow brother in Christ.
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Black ice is no joke. It certainly sounds like your guardian angel was looking after you. I’m so happy you share this, as the world so often feels like a mess and it gives me hope that the next generation might good heads on their shoulders. Merry Christmas to you and yours!
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