We celebrated Christmas early fulfilling a long-standing childhood dream of getting into those packages early. It was Sunday, December 21st. The small stack of presents under the 3 foot table-top tree beckoned, “Today is the day. Mysteries will be revealed.”
At church that morning we sat as a family listening to the continuing sermon series on Luke which reached Luke 2:
Now it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be enrolled….she wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in the manger….[to shepherds] And the angel said to them, ‘Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people; for there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord….
The points of the sermon were: 1) Jesus came for all (people), 2) Jesus is the Savior, and 3) Jesus is God with us. There were good highlights brought out and discussed of this scripture which is so familiar to me as I’ve heard several times every Christmas since I was a small child visiting my Grandy in Louisville, Kentucky. It was a sub-point that hit me hard with a life lesson on God. Perhaps I’ll blog about that another time.
After service, my family gathered for prayer with the Pastor and a recent university graduate who is headed home to Zambia for Christmas, to job hunt, and be with family. Then we were off to our house for a special lunch, opening packages, family time and a great feast in the evening.
So why all the change in schedule? the prayer? the gifts early? This actually won’t be my first Christmas in Holland because I’m headed to Africa. It will be a Congo Christmas for me this year. For the first time I will visit our mission (Future Hope Africa) in the heart of Africa–and to accommodate my niece joining me we are both leaving before Christmas, she from Kentucky, and I from Amsterdam. We will meet on connecting flights in Addis Ababa and go forth together.
Will you join us? In your thoughts, prayers, and in this blog? You and yours are welcome–to our Congo Christmas.
Kristin King is an author, publisher and President of Future Hope Africa.