In reality, no one needs a Christmas tree, decorations, lights, presents, and eggnog. In fact, we would do well to scale down on our “need” for these things and remember why the 25th of December is even highlighted on the calendar: to celebrate the beginning of a shift in history, the birth of Christ. History shifted for me personally when the Christmas story became my story –and my life changed.
This morning I woke to the sound of wind and rain. Immediately my mind went to our church site and I thought, “The tent…”
I now have a captive audience.
Today, January 1, 2018, journals, blogs, newspaper articles, tweets, and conversations will inevitably turn towards expectations and hopes for the New Year: A new job. A new car. A new romance. A new house. A new fitness regime. A new Bible reading plan. A renewed dedication to God. There's something in the hearts of men…
Then came the call to plant churches. This disturbed my idyllic life on the mission field. I can’t say that the call came in the form of a great vision or prophecy. It came more like something we knew we had to do. At first, it was exciting – the very idea of starting a church from nothing was intriguing. Where would we go? How would we start? Who would come?
For most of us, there was time when we remember how clear things were for us in our faith: those early days when we first accepted Christ or those times when God bailed us out miraculously and we saw clearly. As time would have it and life ebbs and flows, slowly the clarity with which we understood our faith was dulled.
If we look for God, even in the most unconventional and unlikely places – we will find Him there waiting to meet with us.