LOVE ALL (Wilma Wigg)
I was nine when we arrived in Canada with my parents and 5 siblings. We attended a one room school, 4 of us almost doubling the enrolment to 9 children. We worshiped at a small community church where it seemed that everyone was related. Everything was strange and different. At first we didn’t understand a word of English. But this small rural settlement was a practical and loving farming community and they embraced us and taught us.
In Holland Christmas was always a season to celebrate Jesus’ birth and gift giving was a separate event on St Nicholas Day on December 6. Our first Christmas in Canada was a totally new experience. At our one room school there was excitement as we prepared for “The Christmas Concert” with carols, skits and more. The night of the concert, parents and friends filled the school. Santa brought bags of hard candy for everyone. A new friend, Shirley, gave me a lovely candy dish which I still cherish.
As I look back on that “first” Christmas, I remember the sense of being loved and accepted. My family came as strangers, yet the community welcomed us, invited us into their homes and provided friendship. Today I have only warm memories of those three years at “The Cassburn”.
1 Timothy 1:15-17
Challenge (by Devon Wagler)
Paul was a member of the Pharisees, which was a group dedicated wholeheartedly to following God’s Law given to them in the Old Testament. He was a member of the most devout, ‘sinless’ group in the entire world.
How do we consider ourselves sinless today? We often look at certain kinds of issues, problems, or sins which are despicable, and untouchable. Jesus came for these people. Who are those people in your life? How can you treat them differently?
“Christmas is a necessity. There has to be at least one day of the year to remind us that we’re here for something else besides ourselves .” (Eric Sevareid)