“Haste makes waste.” We’ve all learned that some things just aren’t worth rushing. Celebrating Advent is one of them. Sharing the Gospel is another.
Advent is a slow and purposeful celebration. It cannot be hurried or abbreviated. It is more like a buffet than a drive-through. Each week’s candle kindles a new truth: hope, love, joy, and peace. The light of one glows onto the next until the final candle, representing the Saviour born in Bethlehem, is illuminated. If we rush through the holidays without taking time to reflect on these truths, Christmas loses its significance.
For many a child, Christmas is the best holiday of the year with Christmas presents, the tree trimmed with decorations and the feasting! They grow up with many happy memories of Christmas. As believers, we especially want our children to remember Christmas as a time when Jesus is the focus. We want to cultivate memories of celebrating God coming to earth to fulfill his promise of a Saviour. We want our children to recognize that Christmas is part of the larger story of the gospel of Jesus.
The world has truly come to our doorstep. Whether we live in North America, Europe, Australia, or any other country, we likely eat Italian pizzas, Indian curries and Japanese sushi. We shop at late-night corner stores run by hard-working, Middle-Eastern families. And, many of us work for or interact daily with businesses created by highly talented people who come from all corners of the globe.
We were very encouraged when we opened a prayer letter from a missionary family and read the following testimony. We asked for permission to share it and our friends said to go ahead! So here it is:
Even though we adults in the house are not as thrilled by the things that surround Christmas, we’re beginning to see some opportunities that come with Christmas that do excite us! We’ve recently had it on our hearts to share about Jesus’ coming to the people closest to us—our neighbors. On a walk around the block, God gave us an idea to pray through our neighborhood and distribute a great little book called What are Christmas and Easter All About? published by GoodSeed. This is a quality, 80-page book that thoroughly explains the Gospel in a way that is easy to understand. We’ve also given these books out to about 100 international students last week at a Christmas banquet. If you’re interested in getting some to use for yourself, check out the GoodSeed website at goodseed.com. If you order them by the case (100 copies) you can get them for $1 each—almost the price of a tract!
Thanks to our friends for letting us share their story. We pray that everyone who received a copy of the book will read and understand the life-saving message of the gospel.
We get a number of questions from people each week asking us how to use our tools. We want to share some of the most helpful questions and answers with you.
I am beginning a work with a group of First Nations people. Some in this group have expressed interest in doing a study about the Bible. I am going to use either The Stranger on the Road to Emmaus or By This Name but am undecided as to which would be more effective.
The audience will be mixed in age with some Catholic background, but also with some animistic background. I am leaning to using By This Name because of this background and because of the “religious” influence that may be lingering over their beliefs. What do you think? Any feedback is appreciated.
Since they were young, Emily and Seana* were very close friends. Emily experimented with the occult and led Seana into it as well. Emily invented a whole world for the two of them and taught Seana how to conduct seances and use a ouija board. Both of them did not know how getting involved with witchcraft could damage their lives.
GoodSeed Translation Coordinators report that teams are assembling in Central Asia for translating Bible resources into their own languages. A studio and talent have become available to record the audio books once the translations are completed. A network of workers is already in place and GoodSeed has been invited to conduct seminars for these workers, to introduce them to the tools and how to use them. Clearly the Lord has assembled many crucial members to these teams.