The Christmas season is officially in full swing at ABC. The church is beautifully decorated, we observed our first Advent Sunday, and excitement is beginning to build as we look forward to all that God has for us this month. When we think about the Christmas season, different words usually come to mind. For some of us, Christmas is all about family. We cherish the special time that we get to spend with loved ones this time of year. For others, the word “busy” comes to mind. We get stressed as we wrap our minds around long to-do lists and countless events popping up on our calendars. Some of you may also think about the amazing food, music, and traditions that this season brings unlike any other.
But when I think about Christmas, the word “generosity” quickly comes to mind. People tend to open up their hearts this time of year. As we humbly count our blessings, we often find ourselves trying to be a blessing to others who need it. Many in our church express generosity this time of year through gifts. We packed over 300 shoeboxes full of gifts to go to children in need all around the world through Operation Christmas Child. Angel tree gifts are now starting to pour in as well, and we will soon see hundreds of white bags filled with gifts for our White Christmas on December 19th. Some are expressing their generosity through their time. Choir and orchestra members have been generous with their time through many weeks of rehearsals for our upcoming Christmas concert at, “Merry Christmas Y’all.” An army of volunteers was generous with their time as they set up all of our beautiful Christmas decorations. We will soon see hundreds more joyfully serve with us at White Christmas and our special events this month. And of course, many in our church are expressing their generosity right now through their finances. Many will generously give to our Lottie Moon missions offering, and so many will faithfully give their tithes and offerings as we approach year end giving. In fact, nearly 25% of all general fund contributions typically come in the month of December.
I want to thank you for being such a generous church. It’s my joy to pastor a generous people because I know your generosity is glorifying to our generous Savior in heaven. We must not forget Christmas truly is a celebration of the generosity of God. Paul tells us, “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:5-7). On that first Christmas, Jesus humbly stepped away from His throne and glory, and instead, He generously entered the very world that He created. And our Father generously gave His only son to make room for us to be adopted into His family through Him. God has richly blessed each of us in Jesus Christ, so it is appropriate that we respond in worship with grateful hearts this Christmas season. I encourage you to be generous this month with your time, talent, and treasure, and I’m confident that God will continue to bless you as you are a blessing to others.
Be sure to pick up one of our “Christmas at ABC” booklets this Sunday so you can stay up to date on all the amazing things that are happening this month at ABC. I look forward to continuing our Christmas series with you this Sunday, and I can’t wait to hear from our Children’s Choir as they help lead us in worship this weekend. Invite a friend to be your guest in worship, and I will see you Sunday at 9am or 11:11.