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Reflections

Welcome to the JCPC Daily Reflections Blog. Reflections are daily devotionals authored by JCPC pastors, staff and members and provide insight, guidance and comfort to help you make it through each day. If you’d like to receive Reflections each day via email,  provide your email address.

Monday, December 24 2018

Here is a Christmas version of 

1 Corinthians 13 to be read at Christmas.

 

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights, and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.

 

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals, and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.

 

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, I am nothing.

 

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata, but do not focus on those I love the most, I have missed the point.

 

...In other words,

Love stops the cooking to hug a child.

Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the spouse.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn't envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return, but rejoices in giving to those who can't.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never ends.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, and golf clubs will rust.

But the gift of love will endure.

Merry Christmas! Give the gift that keeps on giving; LOVE.

We pray that you will experience the peace of Christ during this Christmas season

 
Prayer for Today
 

Gracious and loving God, bless us with the gift of your spirit this day so that we ready ourselves to celebrate the birth of your son.  All our concerns and harried distractions will fade into the background and our hearts will be opened to the greatest gift of all; Christ our Lord. Amen.

Posted by: AT 11:23 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, December 21 2018

The kingdom of God has come near. 

-Mark 1:15

 

Nearly every time an angel appears in the Bible, the first words he says are "Don't be afraid!" Little wonder. When the supernatural makes contact with planet Earth, it usually leaves the human observers flat on their faces in fear. But Luke tells of God making an appearance in a form that doesn't frighten. In Jesus, born with the animals and laid in a feeding trough, God takes an approach that we need not fear. What could be less scary than a newborn baby?

 

On Earth Jesus is both God and man. As God, He can work miracles, forgive sins, conquer death, and predict the future. But for Jews accustomed to images of God as a bright cloud or pillar of fire, Jesus also causes much confusion. How could a baby in Bethlehem, a carpenter's son, a man from Nazareth, be the Messiah from God?

 

Why does God take on human form? The scene of twelve-year-old Jesus debating rabbis in the temple gives one clue. "Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers," Luke tells us (2:47). For the first time, ordinary people could hold a conversation with God in visible form.

 

Jesus can talk to anyone-His parents, a rabbi, a poor widow-without first having to announce, "Don't be afraid!" In Jesus, God draws near.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Heavenly Father, we pause at Christmas to remember how Your Son came to us in the form of a helpless baby . . . and we worship in amazement and wonder that God came near to us. Amen.

Posted by: AT 11:21 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 20 2018

Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger.

-Ephesians 4:26

 

See Also: 

James 1:19; Psalm 4:4, 103:8, & 145:8; Proverbs 14:29, 16:32, & 19:11; and James 1:19-20

 

 

 

 

 

One of my very favorite Christmas stories is the classic,

A Christmas Carol. Not only is it a beautiful story and well told in countless movie adaptations from Mickey to the Muppets to George C. Scott, but it's an important one, rich in meaning and deep in new lessons for annual reading or viewing. And one of my favorite questions is to ask people what the moral is, or what new moral have they gleaned.

 

I'd like to suggest to you that one of the truly meaningful lessons we can observe in this story for Scrooge that is particularly relevant for us today is about his indignation... that which offends Scrooge. For better or, more likely, for worse, one of the easiest ways to identify someone nowadays is to ask a person what offends them most. If it's government interference in education or business, you can guess perhaps their political party, and maybe the opposite, if it's climate change and minimum wage. If it's drinking, we might guess one denomination, and if it's someone taking your pew, we might guess another. We are perhaps most easily recognized by what it is that offends us most. It's no different for Scrooge. And the change we observe in Scrooge is most easily recognized in the shift in what offends him, and not that he becomes less or more sensitive.

 

At the start of the tale, what seems to offend Scrooge the most is anyone squandering his time or money. He begrudges his assistant's Christmas Day off, calling it an annual excuse to pickpocket an employer, and the coal to warm the office. He is infuriated by the request for charitable giving to widows and orphans and even the invite of his nephew to a Christmas party. But after a review of his life and that of his employee, he becomes just as angry at the injustice of the poverty he witnesses and the hunger and illness he himself has the power to prevent.

 

I think it's worth reflection for us all when we are visited at Christmas by this story. Rather than assessing if we get easily offended or never offended, asking something new. We should take an honest inventory of what has offended us this year. In other words, what makes us righteously angry, not quickly angry. If what tops our list is the words or actions of those in poverty or under oppression or the people speaking for them, we need to consider we may be in need of some reorientation of our spirit. But if the top of our list this year or for next year for what offends us is poverty and oppression itself, violence and hunger, cruelty and prejudice, and we are willing to act for change and justice, then we know it will be said of us, as Dickens would say, that we know how to keep Christmas well.

 
Prayer for Today


Lord, help me to keep Christmas well by becoming righteously indignant about evil, and moved by your spirit to make your world as it is in heaven. Amen.

Posted by: AT 11:20 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 19 2018

A while back I heard a minister preach an Advent sermon called "Hurry Up and Wait." He began by telling the story of a man who got so caught up in the busyness of the season, that he went into a card store and grabbed the first Christmas cards he could find. He quickly signed all 49 of them and mailed them out as fast as he could -- not wanting to get behind with all the things he had to do before Christmas arrived. It wasn't until Christmas Eve that he sat down to read one of the cards he had sent out. He opened it up to find these words: "This card is just to say, a little gift is on its way!" Sometimes it doesn't pay to be in a hurry - in fact, it could cost us a lot!

 

The season leading up to Christmas is one in which we are all pushed to hurry and get things done. Even the countdown to Christmas, which tells us how many days we have left for shopping, is enough to drive us a little crazy. Yet, the message of the season of Advent says something that seems counter-intuitive: wait, slow down -- pay attention to the here and now.

 

Advent is a time of preparation to celebrate the coming of Christ into our lives anew and the best way to do that is not to hurry up, but to slow down. What works against us is our anxiety over many things - not getting enough gifts, not meeting expectations, and wondering if we will "do" Christmas "good enough" this year. Yet, the word of God that leads to peace and joy invites us to wait and watch. Slow down and pay attention to God breaking into the everyday events of our world. If we spend our time hurrying, we may miss what is really important!

 
Prayer for Today


Gracious God, help us to slow down and wait. Free us from the anxiety that looms like a low-grade fever. Thank you for breaking into the busyness of our lives today. We pray this in the strong name of Jesus the Christ. Amen.

Posted by: AT 11:18 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, December 18 2018

When you picture the story of Jesus' birth, how do you imagine it? If you were there as a character in the story, what do you think you would see? What would you smell? What would you hear? What would it be like for Mary to give birth in that place? What do you suppose Joseph is thinking/doing? What is the baby feeling or doing?

 

Read Luke 2:1-20

 

Think about the ways that Jesus would have been like any other child. Jesus was unique but also, he was a regular kid. Often, we think of Jesus as this perfect guy, with a halo around his head, walking on water. Why do you think it might be helpful for us to remember that he was a person just like us as well -- that he cried when he got his baby teeth, that he got hungry, that he played as a child, that he had to go through all the growing pains of the teenage years? What other regular human challenges do you think Jesus faced as he grew up? How might his life as a teenager have been like yours?

 

Jesus changed the world. What do you think about that? How is a baby born as a peasant into a violent culture able to change the world? In what ways, do you think the world is different because Jesus was born? In what ways is your life different? What do the lyrics "He showed us heaven with his hands and his heart" mean to you?

 

Take a moment today to name and pray for "children" of all ages both near and far in need of the good news of God's love that Jesus shared with his life and ministry.

 
Prayer for Today


Lord, whose light shines in the darkness, have mercy upon us. Christ, whose birth gives hope to all creation, have mercy upon us. Lord, whose advent brings us joy and love, grant us peace. Amen.

 
 
Posted by: AT 03:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 17 2018

I received a Christmas card in the mail from one of my dear seminary friends, Mark Knisley. I must admit that I felt a bounce in my step when I realized the card was from him (and his wife Nancy). I experienced joy.

 

The third advent candle represents joy and yesterday Gray preached an inspired sermon entitled, "The Joy of Friendship." At least three aspects of joy show up to me when I think about friendships. The first is the act of finding a new friend. You can have many acquaintances, but a true friend is a special find. There is something familiar in them, a piece of your-self, and of course, so much that is different. To find a friend is the joy of recognition.

 

A second joy in friendship is that they transcend time. You probably have a friend in your life with whom you didn't speak to in years, but when you reconnected, it was as if you hadn't missed a beat. A deep sense of joy arises in the re-connection with an old friend.

 

Another joy in friendship is the grace of acceptance. No friend can perfectly meet our expectations and needs so disappointment is baked into the cake of friendship. With friends, true friends, a Godlike form of acceptance creates a supportive space that we all need in our lives. A true friend is an accepting and forgiving friend.

 

I want to share a picture of friendship that encapsulates these three aspects of joy. The picture was taken as two dogs; Buddy and Boudreaux met for the first time. I'm quite sure I have never been so transfixed in capturing the utter joy of finding a new friend.

These two are a mess!!! May their joyful delight in friendship light to candle of joy in your hearts this Christmas and may you share this joy with your friends and family.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Reawaken in us the joy of friendship, Loving God, so that as we celebrate Christmas our hearts will be filled with love and we will share this gift with all. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:29 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, December 14 2018

We love him because he first loved us. 

-1 John 4:19

 

In 1936, songwriter Billy Hill released a popular hit song titled "The Glory of Love." Before long a nation was singing about the joy of doing even little things out of love for one another. Fifty years later, lyricist Peter Cetera wrote a more romantic song with a similar title. He imagined two people living forever, knowing together they did it all-for the glory of love.

Revelation, the last book in the Bible, describes a new love song that will someday lift the voices of everyone in heaven and earth (Revelation 5:9, 13). The music begins, however, in a minor key of mourning. John, our narrator, cries, seeing no answer to all that has gone wrong with the world (vv. 3-4). But his mood brightens and the music builds to a crescendo (vv. 12-13) as John learns the real glory and story of love. Soon he hears all creation praising the powerful Lion-King of Judah (v. 5), who has won the hearts of His subjects by lovingly sacrificing Himself, like a Lamb, for our rescue (v. 13).

In the most moving lyrics ever sung, we see why even simple acts of kindness rise on the wings of a song. The glory we sing about reflects the heart of our God. We sing about Him because He gave us our song.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Father, please help us to see that even the smallest acts of love and kindness can remind us of Your love for us. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:27 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 13 2018

For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.

-Luke 19:10

 

This time of year, we celebrate the coming of God as a baby. In many ways, baby Jesus is the easiest form of God to know and love. What is truly miraculous for us is not just that God came into the world to be among us, but to come looking for those who have lost their way, and to teach us to never stop seeking all those in darkness. Jesus reminds of that mission in chapter 19 of Luke when he invites himself to Zacchaeus' house.

 

This week, I found myself following one of the preschool classes down the hallway. The teacher was explaining to my little buddy, Will, that she had to be at the back of the line behind him to see everyone and keep them safe. He responded, "And in case anyone gets lost?!" And we smiled. And his teacher affirmed, "Yes. And in case anyone gets lost."

 

How reassuring that our God came down at Christmas, not just to be among us or lead us, but to keep an eye on us and go looking for anyone who wanders. God came into our world because God Loves us. We look to Jesus in the manger as Emmanuel, God with us, our rabbi and teacher who leads and guides us, and as a child reminded me this week... in case anyone gets lost

 
Prayer for Today
 

Lord, thank you for coming to be with us, to lead us, and when we need it, to find come looking for us when we get lost. Help me to look for the lost and bring your light of love and comfort, even in the darkest places. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:26 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 12 2018

The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you. 

-Titus 1:5, NIV

 

"What does it mean to be Presbyterian?" I am asked that question from time to time. There are many answers I could give, so I often try to get a better sense of what I am being asked with a few more questions. For example, sometimes people want to know what Presbyterians believe that may be different from others Christians. I may tell them about God's love and grace as coming first -- before we ever reach out to God. Sometimes they want to now about our history -- so I tell them about the Reformation in the 1500s, and people like John Calvin who wanted the church to return to its roots like scripture and faith.

 

However, the word "Presbyterian" comes from how we are organized and govern ourselves. The root word in Greek is "elder" and refers to the elders selected to lead the first churches. Presbyterians churches are governed by elders. Our system is based on the idea that a group of elders seeking to do God's will is more likely to discern it than just one individual.

 

This Sunday we will be electing our next class of elders to serve on our Session. Our Session is made up of fifteen women and men, one youth, and the three installed pastors. The congregation nominates the women, men, and youth. It then directs the Nominating Committee (also elected by the congregation) to recommend which of these individuals should serve on the Session. Those individuals have been asked and have agreed to serve - if elected by the congregation.

 

This Sunday we will vote on that recommended group of individuals. You will receive their names and biographical information tomorrow, as well as Sunday in the worship bulletin. I hope to see you Sunday as we vote on these well-qualified individuals after the 11:00 a.m. service!

 
Prayer for Today
 

Loving God, we give thanks for your church that has endured throughout the ages. Thank you for those whom you call to serve as elders. Bless their work and guide us as we choose who will serve you at this time in our church. In the strong name of Jesus the Christ we pray. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, December 11 2018

I know that this time of year can bring joy, excitement, sadness, anxiety, stress, and peace all within a day or week. When I read an article from David Thomas, author and counselor at Daystar Counseling in Nashville, yesterday, I was reminded of the way that gratitude can be a key factor in how a day, week, or season can go.

 

"The science behind gratitude - how gratitude stimulates the hypothalamus, a key part of the brain that regulates stress. Similarly, it triggers the "reward circuitry" that produces the sensation of pleasure. When we pull out a device and spend a minute or two looking through photos of people, places, and pets, it can temporarily interrupt anxiety and worry, despair and hopelessness, negative or intrusive thoughts."

 

From his advice, I took a moment yesterday afternoon to pull pictures from my phone into a gratitude folder. As I looked at the people, places and pets in them, it brought a sense of joy and peace to my demeanor. Paul's words in Colossians can help us be reminded of this as well.

 

"My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you've been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You're deeply rooted in him. You're well constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you've been taught. School's out; quit studying the subject and start living it! And let your living spill over into thanksgiving." (Colossians 2:6-8 The Message)

Advent is a time of preparing our hearts to receive God's gift to us in Jesus Christ. Pointing my heart towards gratitude is a daily challenge.

 
Prayer for Today


Gracious God, Help us to experience gratitude and share it with others. In Christ's Name, Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:22 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 10 2018

The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them.

-Isaiah 11: 6

 

The second candle to the Advent Wreath represents peace and I can think of no better scripture passage than Luke's. As I ponder the experience of peace and reflect upon this passage I find myself thinking that peace is found in security, rest, and growing bonds. The following includes three pictures of my beloved dogs. As you enjoy each picture please reflect upon the phrase under each.

 

Peaceful Security
 

Peaceful Rest

 

Peace strengthens relationships
 

May your week be filled with peace!

 
Prayer for Today
 

Fill our lives with your peace, O Lord, so that the security of your love, the rest that promotes our hope, and the bonds that strengthen our lives will fill our week. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:21 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, December 07 2018

All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 

-Psalm 139:16

 

My friend was adopted by a missionary couple from the United States and grew up in Ghana. After his family moved back to the U.S., he began college but had to drop out. Later, he signed on with the military, which eventually helped him pay for college and took him all over the world. Through it all, God was at work, preparing him for a special role. Today, he writes and edits Christian literature that ministers to an international audience. 

 

His wife also has an interesting story. She failed her chemistry exams during her first year of college due to the strong medication she had to take for epilepsy. After some careful deliberation, she switched from studying science to studying American Sign Language, which had a more manageable workload. Reflecting on that experience, she says, "God was redirecting my life for a greater purpose." Today, she is making His life-changing Word accessible to the hearing-impaired. 

 

Do you sometimes wonder where God is leading you? Psalm 139:16 acknowledges God's sovereign hand in our lives: "Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

 

We don't know how God will use the circumstances of our life, but we can rest in the knowledge that God knows everything about us and is directing our footsteps. Though His sovereign hand may seem hidden, He's never absent.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Dear Lord, help me to trust You even when I don't understand. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:19 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 06 2018

For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' Then they also will answer, saying, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?'  Then he will answer them, saying, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.'  And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

-Matthew 25:42-46

 

And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

-Luke 2:7

 

 

You may think it's strange to read a passage about Jesus at the end of his life as we celebrate his birth. But it's so important. Many of us love the story of the birth but aren't as fond of his life or death. We tend to have warm fuzzy feelings at Christmas and somber ones at Lent and Easter. One movie even made fun of this as a race car driver prayed to little baby Jesus, his favorite version of Jesus.

 

If you've ever read the Christmas story and thought, like me, you definitely would have made room for a pregnant young girl, whether you knew she carried the savior or not, it's critical we read these passages together. We know the messiness and danger of feeding the hungry and housing the poor and clothing the naked. We are even more fearful of visiting the sick, and especially the imprisoned. We have removed ourselves from young pregnant people in need, for the most part. I'm so grateful this time of year for our partner organizations like Beacon of Hope who choose to work with and welcome young mothers. And I always pray that as a church and nation we always welcome mothers and young children.

 

This Christmas, I encourage you to find ways to welcome the stranger, especially those with young children or expectant mothers, particularly the ones fleeing modern day Herods. Support or volunteer with Beacon of Hope. Call your representatives about refugees and migrants. If we find ourselves saying, "I don't know you," or "we have no room for you," I think we know we will hear those words one day spoken to us by Christ.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Lord, make me your servant who welcomes, who makes room, who, like Mary, is ready for your will and your word and your people. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:18 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 05 2018

Last Sunday, we began a new series of messages called "The Four Love Stories of Christmas." It made me think back to the 1980s when pop singer Tina Turner made a solo comeback with a song called, "What's Love Got to Do with It?" For those of you who remember the song, you may find yourself singing it the rest of the day, whether you like it or not -- sorry about that. The song is about romantic love and the chorus goes this way:

 

What's love got to do with it?

What's love but a second-hand emotion?

What's love got to do with it?

What's love but a sweet, old-fashioned notion?

What's love got to do with it?

 

Maybe this leads us to another question: "What kind of love are we talking about?" Maybe if we were to ask the same question today, "What's love got to do with it?" then the "it" might be all the stories about the birth of Jesus. So, if we were to ask the question again, "What's love got to do with it?" -- meaning the birth of Christ, I believe the gospel writer Luke would answer, "Everything! Love has everything to do with the birth of Christ!"

 

Now I don't know the story behind the Tina Turner song, or even if there is one. It may be about romantic love, but it hardly seems to paint that love in a positive light. But, what exactly is the good of a relationship in which there is not some kind of love at its core? It may not need to be a romantic type of love, but there are other kinds of love: There is the love God has for us and which we can have for God. There is the love between family members. There is also the love between good friends. We will hear more about that love in the weeks to come.

 

This Sunday we will hear about God's love for us in our musical services of "Lessons and Carols." I hope you will come -- and you will invite a friend to join you to enjoy the timeless message of God's love.

 
Prayer for Today
 

Loving God, we all need love in our lives to live. Help us find the love we need. Help us share Your love with others. We pray this in the strong name of Jesus, who is Your love incarnate - in the flesh. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:17 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, December 04 2018

You're blessed when you're content with just who you are - no more, no less. That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought. Matthew 5:5 (The Message)

 

These wise words were on my desk calendar for today. In a season that can often get wrapped up in things, this was a meaningful message for me to hear. These words can keep us grounded. I understand what it means to feel content with who I am, but it has taken time to get there. I can also get derailed and caught up in the messages around me. After reading this, the question came to me, how do you teach this to someone?

 

For me specifically, how can I teach this to my four year old son? If he can understand what it means to be content in life at a young age, imagine how that may affect his path going forward. At what point in your life, did you truly understand what it means. Was it a particular life experience? Was it something that someone said or did? Was it a series of situations that worked together to bring you to this revelation?

 

I think we learn more about being content, when we appreciate what we have and do not long for more. We value relationships and experiences over things. I think it also comes when you put the needs of others before yourself. I saw a glimpse of this when Chap and Will were having a conversation about what Will might say when he meets Santa? He was encouraging Will to think about what he might say and do when he saw him. The time would be limited. One thing Will said as he was brainstorming things to say was, "Dad, I think I'm going to ask Santa what he wants for Christmas?" Chap and I looked at each child with big tear-filled smiles.

 

I believe the message of this Advent season as we wait for the birth of Christ is about contentment with all the gifts we already have been given, putting the needs of others before ourselves, and then sharing the joy and hope that Christ's life offers with the whole world.

How can you do that today?

 
Prayer for Today
 

Gracious God, Thank you for the precious gift of the Advent season and the time we can experience contentment with ourselves. Help us to continue to appreciate all of the gifts that you offer to us each day. In Christ's Name, Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:15 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 03 2018

"I won Christmas!" I remember my son Michael shouting this out one Christmas morn many years ago after all the presents had been opened. The delight of his expression has become a family tradition that has taken a life of its own. The hope is to win Christmas.

Christmas isn't about winning; I think we all know that. However, last week I read an article about winning and it brought a sense of hope back into my life and hope is an essential experience in the season of Advent. Perhaps the hope of winning does have a place in the season of Advent.

 

If you follow the lottery you know that there was a big winner for the one billion dollar Mega Million jackpot a few weeks back. What I didn't know is that there were five $10,000 winners as well. One of the winning tickets was purchased by group of NICU nurses from Mercy Hospital in Missouri.

Instead of splitting the proceeds among themselves, this compassionate group of nurses decided to share the winning with two of their colleagues who were in need. One needed money to bury her 17 year old son who tragically committed suicide. The others recipient's husband had been diagnosed with sarcoma cancer and she had to cut back on her hours in order to care for him and their two sons.

Here is a picture of these inspiring nurses.

Thanks to these merciful angels I can see that the hope of winning has a way of transforming lives and therefore has a place in our Advent season.

The gift of Advent is that God shared his only Son with us as the hope for the world. The gospel of Luke says this; "An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people."

I choose to believe that the action of the Mercy nurses is what "winning Christmas" is all about. How will you share the good news this Advent season and win Christmas?

 
Prayer for Today
 

Gracious God, help us to see all the merciful acts of kindness that you inspire in our world, so that the fear and trembling that has permeated our lives will be replaced with the joy of giving. Amen.

Posted by: AT 03:13 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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