a glimpse toward Sunday 12.19.14

There’s a part of Christmas I thoroughly enjoy. I love watching my kids open up special surprises. I like to capture a few photos highlighting the very second something hoped for is opened. I love pictures from years gone by where my kids and wife have expressions of joy, love, and excitement. A great response to a great gift is worth the malls, online searching, and retail efforts.

christmas response

Do you ever buy a Christmas gift wondering what kind of response it will elicit? Will the person unwrapping your thoughtfulness exude a wide-eyed, open-mouth, moment of sheer elation? What if they yawn at the point of reveal? What if they set your gift down quickly, and move on to something else? What if all your time, creativity, and energy go without any visible response? Ugh.

When you unwrap a gift this Christmas, will anyone be watching for your response? There have been some who faked a surprised response when the most hideous, as-seen-on-tv gadget is suddenly sitting in a bewildered lap. You ever fake it? Have you ever gave a non-response and quickly moved on? THAT must have felt warm and cozy to whom ever wrapped it all up.

Each Christmas, Jesus followers celebrate the greatest gift given. Each Christmas, we unwrap the incarnate God coming into our world and mess. We have a sin problem we can’t fix. We need saved. Our greatest need is not happiness, purpose, health, prosperity, or meeting our personal goals. We need a Savior to save us from the deadly problem of sin. THAT is the gift of grace we unwrap at Christmas each year.

So how do you respond? Think anyone’s watching… say maybe, the Giver himself? You ever fake it? Think some see the Gift, but move on to something else?

On Sunday we’re diving into the Linus text — Luke 2:8-20. My fear is how many take this familiar Christmas passage, and only walk away with temporary warm fuzzies. On Sunday, we go deeper. On Sunday, we’ll be challenged to respond to the Gift and the Giver. We’ll have a great chance to respond to the gospel. Peace on earth is more than you think.

Will you bring a friend? Will you come ready to respond? God has prepared some to respond with baptism, and will go home wet. What a great time of year for such decisions! Where does God have you this Christmas, and will the incredibly good news of Jesus cause you to respond?

The music this Sunday will be unbelievable. We’ll have a huge, rockin’ choir. Our electric violinist, Josh, will blow you away. Sunday is December 21st, so we’ll have Christmas music… and worship music. Keep your eyes out for a special shepherds video. Please consider inviting someone to this special service.

I’m excited to be with you and teach. See you at 9 & 11 a.m.

Merry Christmas Ya’ll,


Weekly Giving | 12/14/2014


Weekly Need $29,000.00


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