Merry Christmas 2015!

The week before last we watched our children share the gospel with their friends and classmates in Haiti and rejoiced with them as some of their friends are beginning to understand the gift of salvation better. One trusted in Jesus Christ alone to save her!

This past week we have been watching our four children make their Christmas gift giving choices after arriving stateside in the land of too many options and after repeatedly promising that this year we would not be helping them purchase their gifts. As a result they are learning that spending their own hard earned money on thoughtful gifts for others is not as easy as they thought (especially when they see how many things the stores have to offer that they could spend on themselves instead). We have heard statements like, “What if they don’t even like it?”, “What if I don’t get anything as nice in return?” Basically, “What’s in it for me?” We felt it necessary to sit down as a family and introduce a movie that would explain why we’ve been calling our children “Scrooges” this past week and search our hearts as to why we are often tempted to hold back when we have been given so much.

The classic movie based on Dickens book, A Christmas Carol, takes Ebenezer Scrooge through his life lived in the past, the present and future. This unique opportunity gave Scrooge a look from the outside in and revolutionized his life and actions from that day forward. His attitude toward giving changed drastically after seeing how his stinginess not only affected his personal life but others as well.

How much are we willing to give? As we give gifts to our loved ones this Christmas let us think about the ultimate gift, the gift of Jesus, that has been given to us. Are we stingy Scrooges with this gift? Do we primarily share Jesus only when we feel secure in our relationships because we don’t want to harm the relationship? Or do we only share with people whom we have no relationship with because we feel it can’t do any harm? Are we more concerned with how sharing and investing in another will affect us or how it will affect another person if we don’t share? Where do you stand? If you know the Messiah are you holding back from sharing him with those who might not know him? You can start now. Don’t wait for a Scrooge like experience to shake you. If you don’t know Jesus Christ personally, there is no better time than today to find out what he has done, is doing, and will do for you if you place your trust in him!

We can learn from Scrooge in many humbling aspects of our lives. Take a moment and reflect on your past. Do you remember the moment you knew you were separated from God and without hope in this world? Do you remember the moment that someone shared the good news of Jesus Christ with you and the immediate hope and confidence that resonated in your heart? Through your trust in Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection on your behalf you now have forgiveness of sin, have received the Holy Spirit and have an eternal home in the presence of Jesus Christ1

Reflect on your present. How are your friends and family, coworkers, neighbors and the world impacted by your life? Are you living and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with this world? We have a perfect opportunity to share the hope that is within us and offer the best present in the world – Jesus Christ and him crucified, resurrected and coming again!

The gospel future would significantly impact our present if we had a glimpse of the faces we love in their future eternal homes (heaven or hell). Pray today that God will give you an opportunity to share the hope within you with someone who is without hope in this present world. As we reflect on the first Christmas past, how that has changed our present lives and has given us hope for the future, may it revolutionize our life and actions from this day forward.

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us.
The government will rest on his shoulders.
And he will be called:
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
His government and its peace
will never end.
He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David
for all eternity.
The passionate commitment of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!

-Isaiah 9:6-7

Thank you for partnering with us and praying with us as we pray for you also to have more opportunities to share the best gift of all-JESUS! Merry Christmas!

*In case you didn’t know the Ream Team is currently traveling stateside in IL, and TX, for the holidays. We are excited to see family and friends, speak at one of our partnering churches and get ready for Elisabeth’s sister’s wedding January 10th! We return to Haiti January 13th!

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