December 2016 Monthly Letter

November 30th, 2016

Dear Reconcilers,

The title of this letter is: “GOD’S GREATEST GIFT GIVEN TO MAN—JESUS!”

There are many prophecies about the coming Savior Jesus Christ. My brief focus is on Luke’s account and how some of these prophecies unfolded. Luke 1:26-33 tells us that on the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy (with John the Baptist), God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

jesus-mary-joseph-mangerMary was troubled, as I’m sure any of us would be if an angel spoke to us. But he said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

As we begin to focus on the birth of Jesus our Savior at this time of the year, I seem to have a special sense of love, joy, peace and hope. I love listening to and singing the great hymns about His miraculous story! One of those hymns, “Lord I Lift Your Name on High,” states:

“He came from heaven to earth to show the way, from the earth to the cross my debt to pay, from the cross to the grave, from the grave to the sky, Lord I lift your name on high.” He showed the way of love and RECONCILIATION one toward another. That was a big part of His message! And as we see the climate today we realize the desperate need for the Ministry of Reconciliation.

Who can resist Martin Luther’s story and John Newton’s song, “Amazing Grace?” The 95 Theses that Luther nailed to the church’s door (some say churches’ doors), highlight the indulgences of his day. Reconciliation is needed inside and outside the walls of the church today.

I marvel and rejoice each morning as I rise up and go to my prayer room, thinking about the fact that I’m talking to the Great God of the Universe, in the name of His Son who died for me and made my salvation secure! This salvation has been given through no work or labor of my own. It’s a free gift. Yet this free gift is the result of a precious price! Yet the father doesn’t ask for grief or sadness over it. He says, “Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say rejoice” (Philippians 4:4).

When I pray, I love to close my eyes and visualize the Father sitting on His throne with Jesus at His right hand, pleased to hear from me. And it’s exciting to know that my salvation is secure in Him.

Let’s all rejoice together over our great treasure of salvation, the love of God and great hope for all eternity, especially at this season of the year. Sing aloud the hymns to our Great God of Love! Thank you for sharing with others as you donate to His Ministry.

My goal, with the help of Jesus, is to spread this needed message of reconciliation as far as I can with the resources Jesus gives us. And I want to show as many acts of kindness toward others as I have opportunity, and to encourage others to do the same.

May the Lord bless you in this wonderful Christmas Season.

In His Service Always,