What an amazing joy to be celebrating Christmas in our own flat (apartment) in India! Pat and I are so excited to be able to split our time between India and America. Plans are to use India as our base for missions in South East Asia, then avoid the heavy monsoon season by spending the summer months in the US.
The weeks leading up to Christmas have been busy with Christmas outreaches. It's a perfect opportunity to talk about Jesus in this Hindu nation. Children at the tea garden village of Baginbari prepared a special program with songs and dancing. They were given toys, groceries for the family and a snack box to enjoy.
Seven families hosted evening gatherings in their homes - carols were sung, the story of Jesus was shared, food was enjoyed. Nepali people love to sing and dance - the video is a little rough - but captures their enthusiasm. The first few seconds do not have sound. Regardless of the setting - a humble village with a dirt courtyard or a beautiful home - the love of Jesus was shared and hearts were encouraged.
Thank you for being a part of what God is doing in India. Your love, prayers and support makes it possible for us to be the hands and feet of Jesus. May the following excerpt from my Christmas message encourage your heart as you celebrate His birth - and receive the precious gift of Jesus.
Christmas blessings from India - Gary and Pat
Christmas can be a discouraging time of year for some, because of a loss of a loved one, a failed marriage, loss of a job, poor health or a child who has not come home.
The good news is that you have a reason to rejoice because God has four amazing gifts for you. These gifts are not wrapped in ribbon and bows, but are manifested in Jesus Christ, who is the greatest gift you can ever receive.
Isaiah 9:6 reads,” For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
- Jesus is 'Wonderful Counselor.' His counsel is unfailing and flawless, perfectly suited to the situation, always practical and wise.
- If you need a miracle, Jesus is your 'Mighty God' who is for you and wants to be invited to help you fight the visible and invisible battles you experience.
- When you need comfort, Jesus is your 'Everlasting Father.' Talking about God as a Father brings complicated emotions for some. But the love of your Heavenly Father is unlike any love you could ever know. A Father, who loves you unconditionally and will never leave you nor forsake you.
- If you are overwhelmed by life, Jesus is your 'Prince of Peace.' True peace is not the absence of a storm. True peace is found in the presence of God, and you can have peace in your soul no matter what your circumstances might be.
This Christmas Season receive God’s great gift “...to us a child is born, to us a son is given.” He is your 'Wonderful Counselor', 'Mighty God', 'Everlasting Father', and 'Prince of Peace.'
Whatever you are going through, Jesus is exactly what you need!