Here are some backgrounds we created for Christmas Day this year. Click the pictures to see and download the full collection via Dropbox. There is a blank slide that you can customize with whatever you’d like as well as slides for each of the majors parts in our service. If there’s a slide missing that you’d like to see added, drop me a comment and I’ll see what I can do to get it added in.
Here are some backgrounds we created for Lessons and Carols this year. Click the pictures to see and download the full collection via Dropbox. There is a blank slide that you can customize with whatever you’d like. There are also slides for each of the majors parts in our service. If there’s a slide missing that you’d like to see added, drop me a comment and I’ll see what I can do to get it added in.
Have you ever heard someone say that praying for patience is dangerous? Here’s how the reasoning works: “If God is truly perfecting us, and practice makes perfect, He might just give you something to be patient about!” I know it sure seems to be true whenever I pray for patience.
Where do you need patience in your life? As I reflect on that, I often think about all the tough and trying things going on. When people are annoying me or circumstances are not going my way, I often find myself praying for patience. Yet we are now entering the Christmas season, a time of great joy and expectation.
I remember waking up as a kid on Christmas morning and seeing all those beautiful presents sitting there waiting for me to tear into them. It was like they were calling to me, full of wonder and mystery, with never-ending possibilities of what might be mine. They were adventures waiting to be explored and for fun to be had.
And it had been revealed to Simeon by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Luke 2:26
Imagine how Simeon must have felt to know that he would not die before seeing Jesus, the Messiah promised of old. Imagine waiting your whole life hoping for that day, and then to find out it would happen in your lifetime. What great excitement he must have felt going to the temple each day, hoping this was the one that would bring him face to face with his Savior!
What promise have you been patiently waiting God to fulfill? What prayer of hope have you been patiently waiting to have answered by God? God is on His throne, working His plan. This Christmas, we celebrate again that the Savior has come and will come again!
And so we—like Simeon—wait patiently for His arrival. We wait patiently for the true Hope of all earth to arrive. So keep praying. Be patient. For Jesus is coming, and He will restore all hope.
After getting feedback about the Gift Card Ministry (formerly Scrip), we decided it would be beneficial to highlight this ministry for Christmas. Here’s what it looks like:
Some thoughts on the design:
I went simple on the design, using the motif of a Christmas tree. The explanatory text continues the image of the tree, making it appear like a larger tree.
The catch phrase “serve others in Jesus’ Name” is accented in red. This is consistent with the next flier we’ll release in February/March.
I intentionally focused on gifts people might give, not every card available. It seemed breaking them out by price group was the way to go for listing those options.
The order form looks very different from the front page, but matches our regular order form. My hope is that when people see the “usual” form, it will be familiar once they get this flier.
You’ll notice an extra line at the bottom of the order form for gift card wrappers. We’re giving away wrappers with every card valued at $10 or more. We’d lose money on cards that are $5 or less. There are currently only about 5 cards that we sell that are below that threshold.
Look for the finished product in a church mailbox near you this weekend. In case others would like to use our work, grab the originals in Illustrator (Front) and Publisher (Back).
My mom found an old blanket in the attic just before we came home for Christmas this year. It’s the blue one that Addison is wrapped in in the above picture. It was the blanket that my dad was wrapped in when he was a baby, and the one I was wrapped in when I was a baby. At Christmas, we got the three generations together for a fun picture.
We’re about to leave for Cleveland for Christmas. It’s about 3 hours later than we had originally planned, but this is why we planned for Tuesday and not Monday evening or Wednesday, when we have a time deadline to arrive in Cleveland. Our normal trip takes 3.5 hours to complete. We expect some snow in Pennsylvania, a few extra stops to manage Addison and at least one feeding along the way. Thankfully, she’s been pretty good in the car the few times we’ve taken her out, so we’re hoping she’ll sleep in the car along the way.
One of the Christ family traditions is having Pepperoni Bread on Christmas morning. Mama Christ usually makes it by herself and we all arrive to eat it, but this year we did the baking at our place when Mom came to visit. The baking took place on November 29, Addison’s due date. I’ve just now had time to edit the video and upload it to YouTube. Here it is:
I always enjoy the Cornerstone Remix Christmas party. We generally do a gift exchange and play some games and do a quick devo. We had about 30 youth and friends at the event this year. We played a name game where youth had to give their name along with a motion (Mine was throwing both hands up in the air and kicking one leg out in front while standing on the other leg). We went around the circle and each time someone gave their name, we all repeated the motion and their name, plus the names/motions for all previous youth. Funny stuff!
After the gift exchange, we did a short quiz from eBibleTeacher.com. The quiz asks questions about the Christmas story and makes you figure out what’s actually in the Bible and what isn’t. The best youth score was 16. Darcy got 19 correct to be the top overall scorer. Afterwards, we talked about the importance of going back to the Bible as our only source of truth, not just accepting what the world tells us to be true.