Friends, Family and Prayer Team
Christmas season; busiest time of the year in the USA. In Chad, Christmas is rather calm, as commercialism isn’t rampant here. In fact all we see that says Christmas is the entrepreneur walking down the street with garlands, lights and the big fat round Santa faces, trying to sell something to make a living. It took Judy and I all of 90 seconds to decorate this year. One three inch tall lighted Christmas tree, some of last years Christmas cards and the grandkids hand made decorations hanging on the wall. Simple and calm is good. For all of you who are stressed to the max right now, slow down, close your eyes, breath deeply three times, and think about what is most calming for you. For me it’s the fact that Jesus loves me, just as I am. OK? Now, back to work stressing about all that is left to do.
Na… stay calm instead, you’ll live longer, be happier and have more peace in your life. God is good, all the time. Even in the middle of all the Christmas chaos. Have you taken the time to read the Christmas story from the bible yet this year? Go find a bible, open it in about the middle, take the right half and open it about the middle. You’ll be pretty close to the book of Luke. Now go to Luke 2 and…. well here it is; http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%202&version=MSG
The Birth of Jesus
2 1-5 About that time Caesar Augustus ordered a census to be taken throughout the Empire. This was the first census when Quirinius was governor of Syria. Everyone had to travel to his own ancestral hometown to be accounted for. So Joseph went from the Galilean town of Nazareth up to Bethlehem in Judah, David’s town, for the census. As a descendant of David, he had to go there. He went with Mary, his fiancée, who was pregnant.
6-7 While they were there, the time came for her to give birth. She gave birth to a son, her firstborn. She wrapped him in a blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room in the hostel.
An Event for Everyone
8-12 There were sheepherders camping in the neighborhood. They had set night watches over their sheep. Suddenly, God’s angel stood among them and God’s glory blazed around them. They were terrified. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Savior has just been born in David’s town, a Savior who is Messiah and Master. This is what you’re to look for: a baby wrapped in a blanket and lying in a manger.”
13-14 At once the angel was joined by a huge angelic choir singing God’s praises:
Glory to God in the heavenly heights,
Peace to all men and women on earth who please him.
15-18 As the angel choir withdrew into heaven, the sheepherders talked it over. “Let’s get over to Bethlehem as fast as we can and see for ourselves what God has revealed to us.” They left, running, and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. Seeing was believing. They told everyone they met what the angels had said about this child. All who heard the sheepherders were impressed.
19-20 Mary kept all these things to herself, holding them dear, deep within herself. The sheepherders returned and let loose, glorifying and praising God for everything they had heard and seen. It turned out exactly the way they’d been told!
We just Skyped with Josh our son. He is traveling in Laos right now, taking a vacation from teaching in Bangkok. He is traveling alone, no real plan, just turning left or right when he wants to see what is down that road. No hotel reservations, stopping at guest houses when he wants to. He’ll head to Cambodia next and be back at school in January.
We Skyped with Jody, Caleb, grandkids and Jordan yesterday, in Asheville, NC. They are doing well. Jordan is visiting them for Christmas. Caleb was in Chad for almost two weeks. He was volunteering at a hospital in the south of Chad. stayed with us on his way down and back up. Its always good to see family, especially this time of year.
We will miss not being around our family this year. We will spend it with our co-workers and their family’s.
Judy and I are here in Chad so that the people of Chad can hear the good news in the language they understand best, their heart language. Thanks for praying for us and all the different ways you help us. We wouldn’t be here, if we didn’t have a team like you. Have a great Christmas season. Really, try to de-stress, we want you around longer, and yes, we will try to de-stress as well.
Jim and Judy McCabe