Unite the USA

December Edition: An Unusual Perspective on Christmas

 
 
December 2009 
In This Issue
The Meaning of Christmas
Action Center
An Unusual Perspective on Christmas
The Meaning of Christmas
"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."- Luke 2:11-14  
Quick Links
Action Center 
This Christmas season, take action and reach out to your fellow man. Here are a few suggestions as to how you can bring Christmas cheer to those around you!
1. Send a Christmas e-greeting to an American soldier. Click here to send Christmas wishes and appreciation to our servicemen and women.
2. Send an e-card to loved ones or pick up the phone and call family and friends to spread Christmas cheer. 
3. Support a worthwhile charity with a donation. There are many wonderful Christian charities such as Operation Care Dallas, Samaritan's Purse, Feed the Children, and World Vision.
4. Visit someone in a nursing home this Christmas. Your visits are treasured.
5. Warmly wish your friends and neighbors a Merry Christmas!
6. Bring a Christmas cookie plate, small gift, or a simple greeting to a shut-in.
7. Visit a Christmas Eve service at a local church and take a friend with you. If you don't have a home church already, check out this church finder.
8. Surprise a child in your area with a special Christmas toy or treat.
9. Send a card to a little one. Most children love to receive mail.
10. Most importantly, read aloud the true Christmas story to your loved ones. Center your Christmas celebration on the birth of Jesus and His great love.
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Unite the USA

Merry Christmas!
May you have a special, meaningful, and happy Christmas as you celebrate the birth of Jesus and His boundless love. This Christmas, enjoy and treasure the fact that you can celebrate in freedom. We live in a great nation and we can live and celebrate Christmas as we choose. Enjoy this month's edition with an article by Unite the USA's Stacie Ruth Stoelting.
Stay strong for America!
Carrie and Stacie Stoelting
Founders of Unite the USA
An Unusual Perspective on Christmashappy
By Stacie Ruth Stoelting
Okay. Yes, I've sung for and prayed with Sarah Palin. To share the stage with her, to be blinded by cameras taking our pictures, and to be filmed for simply standing on a stage taught me much.   

But Jesus' birth announcement proclaimed much: God isn't into fame. He loves us with more love than we could ever imagine!

You see, God didn't pick a Sarah Palin to carry His baby. (If you dislike Sarah, instead of sending me e-mails simply "fill in the blank" with a famous woman leader of your choice.) Instead, He picked the Appalachian-like teen named Mary.

Think of it: God really is not into the fame game. He loves us all the same. (Hey, that rhymed. But it's true.)

The world is warped: Fame, romance, and money are the devil's imitations of God's offerings to us. You see, God loves you and offers you eternal rewards. The devil's imitation elation will be destroyed and the folks who opted for temporary temptations will be left holding the bag...of nothing but empty hearts.

Choosing the world's ways is like picking a burned out Christmas bulb instead of the galaxies of stars.

Sick of the imitations? Want real love? The Word speaks eternal truth:
"This is how God showed his love to us: He sent his one and only Son into the world so that we could have life through him. This is what real love is: It is not our love for God; it is God's love for us. He sent his Son to die in our place to take away our sins."

Will you believe the world or the Word today? It's one or the other, friends. Jesus loves you. Savor the Savior's love today. What's the ultimate present of all presents? His presence.

That reminds me of the movie, The Ultimate Gift. I recently befriended a screenwriter for that movie: Cheryl McKay co-wrote (with Rene Gutteridge) an amusing and insightful book, Never the Bride (Random House, 2009). In it, they convey what it's like to deeply desire a husband yet wait.

The same yearning compares to that of the world before Jesus arrived. With death, disease, and sin, it's pretty clear: This world pines for a Savior!

Have you ever thought of Jesus' birth announcement as a wedding proposal? When Jesus came, He came to offer a covenant relationship with God. Jesus is the ultimate Gift. May we unwrap His love this Christmas and share it with all.

Oh, my readers, pause and praise! Think of it: He didn't have to love us. He didn't have to love us so much that He sent His Son to live and die to allow us to die to the world and live as Heavenly citizens traversing the earth. Oh, He didn't have to be willing to bear our burdens! He didn't have to be born here! But He did it all and loves us so! How I love Jesus! And He loves everyone the same.

When Jesus met a skeptical, hard woman with a very spicy past, He offered love and living water for her dehydrated heart:

"Jesus replied, 'If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.'" (Bold-face added; John 4:10, NLT)

Will you give your heart and receive His gift this Christmas? Choose Jesus. (Click here to do it now.) Once you know Jesus, you know Christmas in your heart.

The Message paraphrase of John 3:34-36 paints quite a vivid picture of what Christmas offers when Jesus shared about His love:

"The One that God sent speaks God's words. And don't think he rations out the Spirit in bits and pieces. The Father loves the Son extravagantly. He turned everything over to him so he could give it away-a lavish distribution of gifts. That is why whoever accepts and trusts the Son gets in on everything, life complete and forever! And that is also why the person who avoids and distrusts the Son is in the dark and doesn't see life. All he experiences of God is darkness, and an angry darkness at that."

"A lavish distribution of gifts" awaits believers in Jesus: We experience supernatural help and love while here on earth and undying life and rewards hereafter.

While the star was amazing for the wise men, it merely pointed to the Star of the universe. Think of what Jesus said in Revelation 22:16 (AMP):
"I am the Root (the Source) and the Offspring of David, the radiant and brilliant Morning Star."

By the way, when I was singing at the Sarah Palin event, I wasn't really singing for her or the cameras. I was singing for Jesus. He's the Star of the universe! Think of that the next time you look up at the bright star atop your tree.