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It has been an interesting year to say the least. I find it maddening that we can live in a world filled with billions of people and yet feel very alone during these past months. We starve for personal connection and look for it in whatever form we can find it. Virtual gatherings, phone calls, texts, and various social media apps became a necessity for many. But even with all the various platforms at our disposal, it still can’t replace in-person interaction. If you can relate, you are not alone.

We desperately need to experience hope, love, joy, peace, and kindness. And I can’t think of a more redemptive way to end a year filled with uncertainty, fear, isolation, death, anxiety, and every other emotion than the Christmas season that culminates in the celebration of the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

We are reminded in Isaiah 43:19, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

Christmas is a time of celebration. It’s a time to remember God’s great love and the gift of his only Son who came to this earth to redeem us from our sins. Christmas grants us the opportunity to appreciate the people in our lives a little deeper and to be a little kinder. Christmas brings us hope, love, joy and peace. It helps us to see God in the little things we take for granted in the every day.

Calvin Coolidge said, “Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.”

Christmas blesses us with the opportunity to end the year on a cheerful note and the chance to start anew, with a fresh perspective.

It is the perfect time to remember that through the chaos, God is good and HE still reigns.

I pray you allow yourself to slow down and enjoy the simple things in life and allow your heart to be touched in a special way. I hope this Christmas season the Christmas lights twinkle a little brighter, the songs are a little more merry, the food a little tastier, the wonderful memories a little more vivid, and everyone a little more patient and loving.

Whether you are 6,000 miles apart, six feet apart or are blessed to hold your loved ones close, may the spirit of Jesus fill your heart and mind this Christmas season.

If you are facing struggles this Christmas, please know that you are not alone. God is still watching over you, and we are just a phone call away. If you just need a listening ear or if we could pray for you in any way, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

From our family to yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Mark Etting

Author Mark Etting

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