24 October 2016
Dear Friends and Partners,
Two of our favorite celebrations each year are Thanksgiving Day and Christmas. Here in the United States, Thanksgiving Day is especially celebrated with members of the extended family as more people travel great distances to gather with family than at Christmas. David said, “Praise the LORD! Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever” (Psalm 106:1). It is truly a time for remembering the goodness of the Lord, and if we are anything or have anything it is by His grace.
Even though many people do travel to be with family during the Christmas celebration, it seems to be more of an immediate family celebration. It is a time of the giving of gifts, yes, but it is most certainly a time of remembering the greatest gift that the world has ever received, and that gift is Jesus. John, writing about this greatest of gifts, wrote, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Who was it that gave? It was God, and it was completely because of His grace and His love toward us.
The giving of gifts is a part of the celebration of Christmas. However, as we give our gifts let us not forget celebrate the birth of our Savior. It is also good to reach out far beyond our immediate families and touch the lives of people around us who are in need. The Word of God instructs us: “do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased” (Hebrews 13:16).
It is our desire that the blessings of God be poured out upon you and that you be abundantly blessed by His presence as well as by His benefits. For the Americans receiving this letter, have a great Thanksgiving Day, and for everyone, Merry Christmas.
Eugene & Sherry