From time to time, my wife Lynda shares some of her
thoughts. This week I thought it would be good to read her perspective on
the coming Christmas season. Read her notes as she discusses how we should
prepare. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
This time of year is a time of preparation; preparing for a season
of giving, getting, fun, frenzy and exhaustion. Just like preparing for a
race, the Christmas season leaves us with much to do. In church at this time
of year we hear about the Advent season. Advent is a time to prepare for
Christmas. Each Sunday leads up to Christmas Day and we hear about the
messages of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. But what are we really in
When I am with Don at a race, I am amazed at the amount of time it
takes to prepare for the race. Teams arrive hours ahead of the race and
spend that time getting the car ready for the track along with time spent at
driver’s meetings, time trials, practice and I had better not forget, chapel
service. Obviously the winner did not get to Victory Lane by deciding to
race that day and showing up at the track just a few minutes before the race
began. Just showing up doesn’t guarantee a win. We can want to win but it
can all fall apart by perhaps missing the driver’s meeting, not focusing on
practice, not making the right adjustments or not having good communication
between every crewmember.
So why does preparing for Christmas really matter? As we run around
trying to find the perfect gifts, getting ourselves into debt and sometimes
mumbling about how we can’t wait for this season to be over, aren’t we just
trying to show those close to us how much we care about them? Is that what
Christmas is supposed to be about? If we look back in history we will find
that giving gifts for Christmas is actually a relatively new thing. It
wasn’t until around two hundred years ago that gifts started to be exchanged
(before that it was considered an insult to give gifts on Christ’s birthday)
and if a gift was given then it was a simple handmade or inexpensive gift so
as not to make someone feel ashamed about the worth of their gift.
Commercialism just started to take over somewhere around 50 to 60 years ago.
From there it has spiraled out of control. We have all fallen into the trap
of buying bigger and better gifts than the year before. Let me ask you how
many of us can really even remember what we received the year before?
Recently I looked into the meaning of Advent and getting ready for
Christmas. I first must admit that I was well on my way to having a rather
bad attitude towards Christmas this year. I couldn’t possibly see how I was
going to find the time to shop or even think about what to buy. I was
planning on feeling overwhelmed and tired and I was sure that Christmas was
going to come and go before I was able to enjoy it. When I looked into the
meaning of Advent I found that it meant “to come to” or “an arrival” and
that it refers to Christ’s coming into this world.
Luke 2:8-20, And there
were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their
flocks at night.
An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone
around them, and they were terrified.
But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of
great joy that will be for all the people.
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the
Lord. This will be a sign to you:
You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel,
praising God and saying,
"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to
"Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord
has told us about."
So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying
in the manger.
When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told
them about this child,
and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But
Mary treasured up all these things
and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and
praising God for
all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been
However, Advent has another meaning; it
also refers to Christ’s second coming, as He has promised to come back
1-4, Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth,
for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no
longer any sea.
I saw the Holy City , the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God,
prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud
voice from the throne saying,
"Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will
be his people,
and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear
from their eyes.
There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order
of things has passed away."
I have to admit that I tend to lean
towards thinking about the birth of Christ at Christmas. At Christians
though, we should be looking for the second coming of Christ. It should
remind us that He is found within us every day, we are never alone and one
day he will come back in glory so that we might share in God’s Kingdom with
By bringing the true meaning of Christmas back in front of us we
will be able to let go of the pressure of thinking that it is all about
finding just the right gift or how much money to spend this year, which
party to attend and do we go to the grandma’s house or just stay home this
year? If we take the time to slow down and step back from all the frenzy we
will find the moments that bring us the most joy. What would happen if we
spent less time shopping this year? Perhaps we wouldn’t spend the next few
months trying to pay it off or catch up with the bills? Often we don’t
realize that we put pressure on those around us to keep up when they can’t
really afford to. They end up depressed and often dread this time of year
because they can’t “show off” about what they have. We have become very
competitive about what we have in material things and about the houses we
live in. It’s not that we have to eliminate gift giving or decorating but we
need to get back to more of a balance. We often think that by doing less we
are depriving ourselves from living the “good life”. What we don’t realize
is that we actually will feel better about how we live if we have a more
disciplined life. Having more things just means we have more to take care of
or more to throw away or more things that we have to replace by buying a
bigger or better model. By making things simpler and less stressed we can
focus on what God’s plan has always been for us..
Romans 5: 1-5,Therefore,
since we have been justified through faith,
we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have
gained access by faith
into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the
glory of God. Not only so,
but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering
perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint
us, because God has poured
out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
After spending time looking into what
Christmas should be about I have changed my way of looking at it this year.
I am feeling I have more control over how this season will go, by letting go
of the control over it and just remembering to honor God for the gift He
gave us with the birth of Christ and the promise that He will come again. By
looking at the gifts that we can give, we should all realize that the best
gift is our time. By helping those in need, visiting a lonely person, giving
a friend a call or praying for a closer walk with God we will let go of the
need to compete with those around us and the true reason we celebrate
Christmas will follow us long into the New Year. May each of us have the
blessed season that we were intended to have. God Bless!
THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD
MOTORSPORTS 2014 - One last update as
we look forward to the new year. We have confirmed three cars for our
display, The Whelen Modified Tour Champion Ryan Preece and the 316 Flamingo
Motorsports #16. Ryan will be joined by Valenti Modified Champion Rowan
Pennink. Rowan will bring his #93 Monk Hand Cleaners WMT ride for display.
They will be joined by Eddie MacDonald and his Grimm Construction #71 K&N
Pro Series ride.
Until next time, be a witness for our Lord with the ministry decals
and apparel. See them at the Show Your Faith Apparel Store at
http://www.rwjm.com/store. Send us your prayer and counseling needs no matter
what part of our racing family you are in, or give us a call. Remember that
God loves you, we love you and
We are still working on one more surprise for you but the
confirmation may come too late for publication. We are hoping to have the
K&N Pro Series Champion Dylan Kwasniewski and his Rock Star Energy Drink
ride with us also.
Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing. GOD BLESS.
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Numbers 6:24-26 "The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord
make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face
toward you and give you peace."
May God always Bless you, everyday in everyway. Rev. Don
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