As a child, the most exciting time of year for me was Christmas time. Naturally presents decorated in beautiful green and red satin paper were what I looked forward to. My brother and I would carefully count the presents under the tree to see who had more! Obviously, we thought, the other person had more. And then! Christmas Day the biggest, most expensive present was the one we liked the best. Now, of course, I realize that it really is the thought that counts and not the price tag.
Decorating for Christmas was always a wonderful time in our house. First we would go buy a real tree at the tree lot, set it up in the window, and start decorating. Not only did we decorate the tree but my dad also put miniature lights around this huge mirror and set up the angels dancing around the candle chimes. My little brother’s eyes would glow when we turned off the normal lighting and just left the Christmas lights on in the living room. What a beautiful sight!
As a child, I loved the presents, the lights, the turkey, and the tinsels, but I couldn’t understand why my mom would try to spoil a good holiday by trying to drag me to church. To me, that was going a little far! As I grew older, the delight of Christmas faded bit by bit, year by year. I wondered what was wrong, and decided that the problem must be that my parents weren’t spending as much money on me as before In fact, my presents cost them far more than I would have imagined. Eventually I became cynical about Christmas and wrote it off as commercial exploitation.
At age 17, I met some friends who had a joy and inner peace that really attracted me to them, Christmas still excited them. I asked them: “Why?” They told me they were excited about a child in a manger. At age 17, I too came to know that child. I made a manger for Him in my heart. Once again Christmas stirred within me “Peace on Earth, Good will to Men” Once again I could sing “Joy to the World” and really mean it. Our Christmas prayer is that all those reading this article feel the peace of that little baby lying in the manger.
The Rev. Dr. Ed and Janice Hird, BMus. (BSW, MDiv, DMin)
Sandy Brown and her family have just moved to Spokane, Washington where her husband, Scott, is pastoring a new church. With a fresh start, Sandy is determined to devote more time to her four children. But, within weeks of settling in their new life, the Brown family is plunged into turmoil.
Sandy receives shocking news that her children aren’t safe, which brings back haunting memories of the trauma she experienced as a girl. Then, the unthinkable happens…
A brutal attack puts Sandy on the brink of losing everything she’s loved. Her faith in God and the family she cherishes are pushed to the ultimate limit.
Is healing possible when so many loved ones are hurt? Are miracles really possible through the power of prayer? Can life return to the way it was before?
Blue Sky reveals how a mother’s most basic instinct isn’t for survival… but for family.
If you’re a fan of Karen Kingsbury, then you’ll love Blue Sky. Get your copy today on paperback or kindle.
-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form. Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.
To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.
– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD. This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.