Ok, I know you probably get them or give them out every year. Some are handed out or dropped by, some are emailed, and now some are even texted and tweeted, but most are still mailed. They can be a source of great joy and great frustration, but mostly sought to bring about something very valuable to us, so valuable that we will extend much energy and even no-small-amount of expense on them, let alone the effort to muster up the creative design and crafting so it will express its intended purpose.
What is this item of creative prowess and such importance that we would go to all the expense of producing it? Well, it’s our annual Christmas letter. You may or may not do one, but if you do, you know exactly what I am talking about. Sometimes I just stare at a blank page and have no idea what to say or how to put in some fun pictures that help our friends and family get a glimpse of what has happened in our lives over the past year.
But the reason we go at this endeavor is we desire to connect with people who we no longer see on a regular bases, either because they have moved or we have moved and our lives don’t intersect as they did. This letter is the only connection. Sure, I could pick up the phone or get on Facebook, or email or Skype or write more snail-mail letters, but this letter has become that one connection.
I don’t know if people do what I do when I read the letters we get, but I take a moment and enjoy the read. I feel reacquainted, in the know, hear their joys and maybe even a few of their sorrows. Yes true some of those letters are pure entertainment as they go into too much detail; like the one where some distant relative shared some fairly graphic details about a few surgeries and procedures that just should not be mentioned. (I think it was about bowel reconstruction or something like that. I think I blocked it out of my mind because it was descriptive and they shared a lot of details to where I got a little queasy.) Then there have been a few that were a few pages of very fine print where they tried to tell about EVERYTHING they did through out the year…month by month. Yet still I appreciate the time they took and I have enjoyed the moment of reconnecting.
These letters and cards and photos are wonderful surprises from family and friends that just want to stay connected, even if it’s but once a year. I am appreciative of the effort and thankful for the Christmas Connection. It is so fitting being this is the time of year we celebrate God’s great Christmas connection towards us.
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.
God knew we were disconnected from Him.
Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.
So He sent Jesus to live among us and eventually pay the penalty for our sin as He died on the cross.
1 John 4:9-10 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
This passage goes on to say…
1 John 4:11-12 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us.
So whether you send Christmas cards or letters let me encourage you to not only open your life to experience the love of God through Jesus, but love others as well and invest a little effort in connecting with them. Making that Christmas connection could just be what is needed to make your Christmas or their Christmas all that much more special.
Seeking to make some Christmas Connections with you,
P.S. For those of you in and around Cypress Church, I want to encourage you to be planning for our special spiritual growth campaign coming up this January (1/8 through 2/12). We will be exploring how to be More Like Jesus. Be watching for details. It is going be a great time of growth!