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8 months, 2 weeks ago 10

One of the highlights of my Christmas seasons is a visit to a little church in our town where my daughter and her family attend.  A week or so before Christmas they have the children’s Christmas nativity play.  It’s one of the sweetest evenings seeing these little children acting out the scene at the manger, as the Christmas story is read in scripture.  The small congregation sings some of the most wonderful Christmas hymns, Joy to the World, Away in a Manger, and Silent Night.  At the end of the evening the pastor shared a precious story.  It seems another group of children were performing a nativity play and at the end they each held up a card with a single letter, they spelled out C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S   L-O-V-E.  Little Johnny, who was shy and withdrawn, noticed that some in the congregation were laughing.  Little Johnny knew it was something he had done, but he didn’t know what!

 

The pastor saw that Johnny was holding his letter upside down.  Little Johnny was holding the M.  The pastor wisely stepped between Johnny and the child next to him and told the congregation, “see little Johnny got it exactly right Christ Was Love.   Please let me add, he is still love today, and he will be love in all your tomorrows!  He does not want you to feel alone, afraid, unwanted, un-needed, He wants you to know He values you, loves you, and accepts you, and that He is offering you His forgiveness!  That’s why He came, that’s what we celebrate every Christmas day, and every day!!  The children did get it right, if we ever had anything in life worth celebrating it is the coming of our Savior!

 

Merry Christmas,

 

the pilgrim

 

 

 

8 months, 2 weeks ago 10

I imagine your response was, “well, whoop-de-doo!”  Can’t say that I blame you, but I have something a little deeper to share about the occurrence…..  I know, you’re not surprised, are you?

 

Here is the back story.  I’ve been retired from Nikon since July 1st of this summer.  I had a lot of thoughts about what retirement was going to be like, many of them were dead on, but the most important impact on me personally was not so obvious.  I knew I was going to enjoy being home more, being with Sherelene more, not being home only to re-pack, for the next mission.  What I never expected was I’ve learned what most people take for granted.  They build their lives around the best, and most simple things, relationships!  Don’t get me wrong, I knew I loved my wife, and I treasured our time together, but it was always on the timer, counting down until I had to leave again.  Most of my friends often told me how much they wish they were living my life,  I would often think I would trade places with you, but honestly I loved being on my way to big events, air shows, exciting meetings, beautiful, and interesting locations.  The thing is I didn’t know what it was like to have “unlimited time at home”!  Tonight Sherelene had some charts to do and so she was set up next to the TV doing her charts and watching Kentucky and North Carolina play a big basketball game, to those who cared.

 

I was in the kitchen watching and episode of American Pickers, that I’ve probably seen before.   When I went in to kiss Sherelene and ask how the game was going she was on pins and needles as the lead was constantly changing.  She said, “why aren’t you watching the game?”  My answer shocked her.  I’ve always been a big Kentucky basketball fan, but in the last few years I’ve come to have a completely different attitude about sports, even Kentucky basketball.  My answer was as follows;  ”You see these two teams are going to run up and down the court, and score, and someone will get a little ahead, sometimes they will be be tied,  and sometimes be behind one another. Near the end of the game one team will pull away, or it will be close, but when the buzzer sounds, one team will have less points and loose.  It’s just a game, why should I sit in front of the TV chewing my nails down to the quick, when tomorrow it won’t matter!”

 

The important thing will be I’m home with Sherelene, and we did the kinds of things normal people do!  I brought home pizza tonight!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

 

Photo Note:  shot with my iPad!

8 months, 3 weeks ago 5

You may be wondering what some lobster floats has to do with Christmas?  Let me start by asking you a question, please?  Which Christmas is this for you?  Your first, your tenth, your forty fifth?    I have often thought that your first “real” Christmas comes after you’ve given your heart and life to the One Who’s birth we celebrate.  Once you know Him you will never look at Christmas the same way, ever again!  My greatest hope, my deepest desire, is that everyone I know and love will know Christmas as I know it.  There are dozens of people that are on my specific prayer list, people whom I greatly love, that have not yet accepted Christ’s offer of forgiveness.

 

In scripture it says he will make us fishers of men.  I know that is what I am, it is my most fervent mission.  What better time could there be to meet Him than as we approach His birthday!

 

I can tell you one thing for certain, you will never receive any gift so precious as His love, acceptance and forgiveness!

 

Merry Christmas,

 

the pilgrim

 

P.S.  I had lunch with Chuck Summers today, we both drove over a couple of  hours each to have one of our too infrequent lunches.  On the drive home I was reminded of how blessed I am to have a man like Chuck, be willing to call me his friend!  This is just one of the wonderful rewards of accepting our Lord!  He will fill your life with His special servants and you’re new bothers and sisters!

 

Photo Note:  iPhone with Simply HDR App

8 months, 3 weeks ago 3

Rodney!  You got it, I’ve become such a sucker for black and white, sorry about that Jack, I meant monochrome!

 

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

More to come!