Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Things have been tough the past couple of weeks. I have been facing some struggles with the flu, a cough and even had pink eye. I know of several that have had health issues as well. It just seems like satan is doing all he can to bring us down.

As I write this, I am fully aware that satan is alive and well. If it is not sickness, we are hearing of things all over. From sickness to shootings to political issues, satan is doing all he can to tear us away from hearing the call of Christ to salvation in His One and Only Son.

As we enter this Christmas season it is imperative that we not allow the drama of various issues drown out the glorious truths resounding at this time. Now more than ever people need to hear the angelic announcements that burst into the lives of Mary, Joseph and the shepherds.

To Mary the angel said, “The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.” Luke 1:35

To Joseph the angel said, 20But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21”She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” 22Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 23”Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which translated means, “GOD WITH US.” Matthew 1:20-23

To the Shepherds the angels said, 10But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; 11for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12”This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”

Did you hear that? -- the Holy Child shall be called the Son of God ---- He is conceived of the Holy Spirit – His name shall be called Jesus – Immanuel – which is God with us --- and Savior who is Christ the Lord. Wrapped up in that blanket in a manger was God in the flesh come to touch the lives of all mankind.

But just as important as the announcements was the reaction from Mary, Joseph, and the Shepherds. In Luke 1:38 --Mary said, “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word.” --Then in Matt. 1:24 -- “Joseph arose from his sleep and did as the angel of the Lord commanded him, and took her as his wife.” And in Luke 2:15b – “…the Shepherds began saying to one another, ‘Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.”

When the revelation came, they each responded in submission and obedience. Should we do less? I pray this year that your heart will be touched and you will remember why we celebrate Christmas. Like it has been said many times – Jesus is the reason for the season!

JESUS, JESUS, JESUS, there IS something about that name!!

Christ only, always,

Bro. Paul