I once knew a man who hated receiving presents. It wasn’t that he was a modern-day Scrooge. He just didn’t want his family and friends to waste money getting him stuff. He had what he needed and didn’t want or need anything else. I never saw him do it, but I heard that if someone brought him a wrapped gift, he would refuse to open it. He was a faithful, generous Christian man, but he was stubborn. And I think he took pride in being stubborn.
What he didn’t realize was that by not accepting gifts, he was hurting the people closest to him. His wife, children, and grandchildren would get upset when he refused their gifts and thought he didn’t care about their feelings. He thought he was helping, but in reality, he was not. I haven’t seen this man in years, but I hope he has learned to appreciate the joy in the eyes of his grandchildren when he receives the gifts they offer him.
Sometimes, in our attempt to de-emphasize the commercial aspects of Christmas, we say that Christmas is not about receiving gifts. We say Christmas is the “season of giving.” But I think Christmas is a season for receiving as well as giving. The truth is that, even though it’s not our birthday, God gives us gifts at Christmas. And God is pleased when we receive the gifts God gives us. That’s why our Advent and Christmas theme will be The Gifts of Christmas. The season of Advent starts on November 29. I hope you’ll join us for worship online every week and discover what they are; and I also hope you’ll be willing to receive the gifts that God offers you.
Because Christmas is about receiving and giving, and because it’s not our birthday, I want to encourage you to share the blessings you’ve received from God with someone who needs some help right now. You can support Trinity Church financially and help fund Trinity’s Mission and Outreach programs. You can support SHARE of McLean or Christ House or another local helping organization — the needs are great. You can share God’s blessings through the simple act of offering love and kindness to a friend or a stranger. There are many ways to celebrate Jesus’ birth.
Anne and I feel blessed to be part of the Trinity Church family and are looking forward to spending Advent and Christmas with all of you.
Rob, Andrew, and Emily join us in wishing you a safe, healthy, and blessed Advent, Christmas, and New Year.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Advent – Christmas 2020
On Youtube, Facebook & Zoom
F Facebook (facebook.com/TrinityUMCMcLean)
Y Youtube (youtube.com/UMTrinity)
Z Zoom, Meeting ID shown
|Sundays||Children’s Education Activities :|
|Mondays, 7 p.m.||Engage Bible Study on Zoom: Contact Jim Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Tuesday, 10 a.m.||Bible Study||Z: 894 8087 9762|
|Bible Study||Z: 886 5257 6837|
|Prayer Group||Z: 875 6105 5580|
|Tues., Dec. 8,|
|Honduras Mission Information||Z: link will be included in E-News|
|Sun., Dec. 13||Lessons & Carols||F, Y|
|Dec. 24||Christmas Eve Worship||F, Y|
|Sun., Dec. 27,|
|Celtic Service||F, Y|