December 11, 2017

I say this every year about this time but it’s hard to believe Christmas is just two weeks away. I hope you have your shopping done (Ha) and are ready to celebrate with loved ones!! I am praying today for those of you who are tempted to be discouraged or depressed during this Christmas season. I am praying that God will give you hope and joy as you focus on what He has done for you. The angel said I bring you good news of GREAT JOY!! Jesus is ultimately all we need. May we be reminded of that this Christmas.

When I was a Youth Pastor I was often stunned by how little Scripture my “good” kids knew. I remember one time giving them a 20 question quiz where every question was as simple as I could imagine off the top of my head. I was a little concerned that they knew so little. That was 20 years ago and I imagine biblical knowledge has not increased in the intervening years. It made me wonder what would happen to the church when these young people became adults and leaders in the church. Now I will say here that many of these youth have become awesome Christian adult leaders, some ministers, so maybe I was overly concerned for no reason. But I am still concerned that the average church member spends so little time in God’s Word. Many do not read it much less study it or memorize it and yet we want to tell others how to live and how things should be done in God’s house. I shudder to think how many of our decisions have no basis in what God would want because we don’t know God’s Word and thus we don’t know God’s heart.

At Christmas I am reminded of this because of the Christmas quiz I have given many times over the years. Now, some of the questions in this quiz are put in there as sort of trick questions. But others are there to reveal how we don’t read the actual account of Christ’s birth but instead our knowledge is based on our cultural interpretation, which is often wrong. One example of this is the idea of Three Kings riding in on camels. The problem is we don’t know what they were riding or even if they were riding. We also don’t know how many there were. We only know there were three gifts mentioned and so we just assume . . . probably wrongly. And they were not kings but “magi” or wise men. This is just one example of not really reading God’s word but just allowing our culture to educate us, incorrectly. Let me pass on a couple of links to pages dedicated to clarifying a few of these myths and misunderstandings. One is called “4 Christmas Myths We’ve All Totally Bought” and the other is titled “What are some of the most common misconceptions about Jesus Christ’s birth?” If you have the time be sure to check those out. There may or may not be a quiz the Wednesday night before Christmas.

Next week I’m going to be sharing a lot of the things coming up in the life of FBCWS for the first half of 2018. It is going to be a busy year so I want to give many of you a heads-up about what is coming and how you can begin to pray!

Happy Birthday tomorrow to my grandson Eli James Hixon who turns TWO!!

It was great to have my daughter, Gabby, surprise us with a quick trip into town over the weekend. On Saturday we had all 6 of our kids together for the first time in 3 years. We also had all of our children and spouses and grandkids together except for Gabby’s husband, Patrick. I’m sure you will be seeing a picture of the whole Hixon family on Jennifer’s Facebook this week. It was a wonderful time with each and every one of them and I thank God for his blessing on us!!

I am ON MISSION Today! Are You?