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November 28, 2018, 11:00 AM

As Christmas gets closer and closer, we hear more and more about giving and receiving gifts. The media constantly clamors for our attention as to the latest trends in buying gifts, proclaim­ing a particular object as "this season's hottest gift." It has even reached out to our children repeatedly telling them which toy is the one they absolutely must have or else their holiday will be ruined. I wonder if people ever think about how God looks at all of this so-called "celebration of Christmas." At least in our land, it seems that the marketing and advertising forces have domi­nated the perspectives of so many that little if any thought is given at all to the real reason we celebrate Christmas-the birth of the Christ-child, the Messiah, Jesus.

I really don't expect a lost and sinful world to share our understanding of the real meaning of Christmas. However, I certainly do expect those in the family of God to not only understand, but to also rejoice in why Christmas is such a special time of year. Since we have been so richly blessed with the gift of “a Savior, which is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:11), it is only natural that we would want to share that blessing with as many other people as possible.

One of the best ways to do this is to give generously to the Lottie Moon Offering for foreign missions. The national goal for this offering is $160 million. Our church's goal is $1,000. This offering goes to support the work of IMB foreign missionaries serving in over 130 countries around the world. Even if we are not personally called by the Lord to serve on the mission field, this opportunity to give to support those who have been called is a wonderful way for us to show that we really care about people all over the world. It is a way for us to show that we care about them so much we want to share the "good news" (really the best news) of Jesus Christ with them.

In addition to giving financially, we also have the opportu­nity to support our missionaries prayerfully during the Week of Prayer for Foreign Missions, December 2-9. The theme for this year's emphasis is "EVERY CHURCH, EVERY NATION." How can we, who have been loved and blessed so much, not give, support and pray for those who have sacrificed so much to tell others about Jesus?