No preparation necessary to be ready for Christmas blessings


    I have not even thought about what I am going to get anyone for Christmas. We do have a bare tree in our den, but the decorations are still stored in the storage room in boxes of various sizes and descriptions. 
    The calendar is beginning to be filled with various events, but I have not had time to think about them very much. And yet, I am ready for Christmas.
     I am ready to think about being loved so much that God would give His son as a gift for me and for you. I want to experience Jesus as a child. I am ready to feel the wonder at the realization that my savior was born in a manger. The awe of the shepherds as the angels came to them and explained that a child had been born that would forever change the world is something that I want to experience for myself. 
 The wise men came and gave gifts to pay tribute to this child, and I want to be able to give in tribute to the living Christ – not gifts of gold, incense, and myrrh, but I want to give myself to him. 
     Like Mary, I want to be filled with joy as others come to see and experience the presence of Jesus. I want to be reminded of the hope that came with the birth of the Christ child and still comes from a relationship with him. 
 I want the peace that comes through Jesus, not just peace in the world, but the inner peace that comes from knowing that Jesus can calm the storms. Knowing that I am loved, I want to have the desire in my heart to love others as I am loved.
   I may not be “ready” for Christmas in the ways we may often consider being ready, but I am ready for Christmas. I am ready for the focus to be on Christ, just as it was on the first Christmas long ago.
   My hope for you is that you will be able to take time in the “busyness” of the season to experience Christ and fully realize why we do all we do to celebrate the coming of Jesus. I pray you too are ready for Christmas and will know what it is to be loved and appreciated - because you are loved and appreciated by our Lord Jesus! 
   May God bless you and your family in this Christmas season.
    Richard Chewning is superintendent of the Gainesville District. To contact him email: